6 Reasons Why Fungi are the Coolest

Posted on August 15, 2016

Did you hear the news? Certified Naturally Grown just launched a new mushroom certification program! To celebrate, we’ve rounded up our top 6 favorite fungi facts: 


1. Break it down
Fungi are nature’s recyclers. Fungi mycelium (the hidden thread-like part of fungi that spreads underground or through wood) can excrete special enzymes that break down organic matter and unlock nutrients. Some fungi can actually mine rocks to absorb minerals that wouldn't be accessible otherwise.

Photo of mycelium by Distant Hill Gardens, https://www.flickr.com/photos/59898141@N06/15929408282/in/photolist-qgCo7o-oQupv8-95i7f3-dzYDHj-95i7mQ-oscbqZ-odjfg4-jNYCPn-EJAeR-EaRtf-pwXBjo-dnwJiB-95PvcH-qc48bb-95PvfH-bwo96g-gQJZF3-95f2nH-7JknEU-poy2xJ-7JgrBZ-bCY1Do-jM4Wdy-oqe8U5-bwsnMZ-bRSyM8-dSaMeQ-dSEv4f-bCY1Jh-EJBK9-bRSyT6-7Wnmp2-bqJwop-bQEzJV-9mtZrQ-95RJir-bQEyEc-9spaG9-9TdiJy-EJzmX-c6dzfd-njNEfE-hBfcZQ-pZ84wY-c6dAty-obgaJp-obyx9Z-obufGW-7n2nkZ-obyy2R

2. Keep it clean
Fungi are so good at recycling that certain kinds are used to clean up contaminated soil. You wouldn’t want to eat those of course. Rest assured that Certified Naturally Grown mushrooms are grown only on natural substrates – no GMOs or heavy metals allowed.


3. And tasty too!
Edible mushrooms come in all shapes, colors, and sizes but most supermarkets only carry a few varieties. Find a local mushroom grower and you’ll open the door to a rainbow of choices and the freshest, most nutrient-dense mushrooms possible.


4. More than the eye can see
Mycelium grow in dense and far-reaching networks underground. In forests, many types of fungi have a symbiotic relationship with trees. The fungi provide nutrients and minerals to trees, and get extra carbon in return. In fact, some trees can’t survive without their fungi friends. 


5. A world of possibilities
Folks at Clemson University are researching the potential for fungi to provide a whole range of useful functions, like fighting antibiotic resistance, filtering water, and providing sustainable building materials. Tradd Cotter, a member of our Mushroom Advisory Council, is part of that research and was featured in this amazing video by National Geographic.http://video.nationalgeographic.com/video/news/160708-news-mushroom-mountain-uses-vin

6. Kind of a big deal
Did you know the biggest living organism on the planet is a fungus? It’s a honey mushroom (Armillaria ostoyae) in eastern Oregon that weighs more than 8,000 tons and covers an estimated 3.7 square miles.

Armillaria solidipes, photo by Armand_Robichaud - https://www.flickr.com/photos/126010713@N04/16318759995/in/photolist-dZc5a8-pZ5wbH-aoEYyK-qS2UNX-F2omrG-Fd5CNH 

Check out our Mushroom page to learn more about certification!