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April 27, 2022

NZ Mushroom Growing: Lions Mane, King Oyster, Reshi & Chaga

Mushroom growing in NZ is very restricted. Here's the reason why and a list of what we are allowed to grow.

Mushroom growing in NZ is very restricted. We often get asked if we grow the following varieties, but sadly we are not allowed to grow or buy fresh in New Zealand.

  • Lion's mane mushroom - No
  • King Oyster Mushroom - No
  • Cordyceps - No
  • Reshi - No
  • Chaga - No

In fact, there are so many varieties not allowed. It’s easier to list the 25 that are permitted. Anything not on this list would fall under the Hazardous Substances and New Organisms Act 1996

In 1996 new legislation was introduced to protect our native species and agricultural industry from unintentional threats aka bio-security. This means anything not growing in NZ before 1996 does not make the cut, and importation is next to impossible. This is controlled by the EPA with MPI responsible for endorsing it.

However, a recent addition to this list (and it took a lot of effort to prove it was growing before 1996) is Pleurotus ostreatus. But, even with its inclusion on the list no Mushroom grower in NZ has successfully been able to import it.

Fortunately, some of these can still be purchased frozen, canned or dried.

The "allowed" mushroom growing list

Here’s a list of exotic, edible fungi approved for import. Aka, what we are allowed to grow and buy fresh.

  1. Pink Oyster Mushroom: Pleurotus djamor/Pleurotus opuntiae*
  2. Phoenix/Grey Oyster Mushroom: Pleurotus pulmonarius
  3. “The” Oyster mushroom: Pleurotus ostreatus (but unable to successfully import)
  4. Enokitake: Flammulina velutipes/Flammulina filiformis
  5. Button Mushroom: Agaricus bisporus
  6. Pavement Mushroom: Agaricus bitorquis
  7. The Prince: Agaricus augustus
  8. Brick cap: Hypholoma sublateritium
  9. Saffron milk cap: Lactarius deliciosus
  10. Wine cap/burgundy mushroom/king stropharia: Stropharia rugosoannulata
  11. Wood ear mushroom: Auricularia polytricha
  12. Shiitake: Lentinula edodes
  13. Turkey Tail: Trametes versicolor
  14. Porcini/cep: Boletus edulis
  15. Shaggy Parasol: Macrolepiota rachodes
  16. White Brain Jelly Fungus: Tremella fuciformis
  17. Purple-spored puffball: Calvatia cyathiformis
  18. The fairy ring mushroom: Marasmius oreades
  19. Matsutake: Tricholoma matsutake
  20. Chanterelle: Cantharellus cibarius
  21. Morel: Morchella esculenta
  22. (Paddy) Straw mushroom: Volvariella volvacea
  23. Shaggy mane/Lawyer's wig: Coprinus comatus
  24. Black morel: Morchella importuna
  25. Bamboo mushrooms/stinkhorn: Dictyophora indusiata

Here's a link to the official list [https://www.mpi.govt.nz/import/plants-flowers-seeds-plant-growing-products/importing-fungi-growing/steps-to-importing-fungi-for-growing/]

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