Functional Mushrooms 101


Table of contents

Functional Mushrooms 101


We kick off our very first episode of season two with a deep dive into Functional Mushrooms with Alex Dorr. 

Show Notes:

  • The evolution of fungi on planet earth
  • The development of functional compounds as defense mechanisms
  • Co evolution of humans and mushrooms
  • Alex Dorr’s introduction to mushrooms
  • The History of Mushroom Revival’s Organic Cordyceps militaris farm 
  • A rundown of 10 famous functional mushrooms everyone should know
  • Mycelium vs fruiting bodies 101
  • The life cycle of mushrooms
  • How to extract mushrooms and which solvents pull which compounds
  • False labeling tactics to look out for in the industry
  • A comparison of beneficial compounds between mycelium vs fruiting bodies
  • Future of the functional mushroom industry
  • Finding new species of 
  • Future of mycology as a whole

Alex 0:17 You're listening to the mushroom revival podcast. Welcome back, everyone, we took a long break from season one. And this will be the first episode of season two. There's been a lot going on, I'm going to be real. I've been traveling the world was in multiple countries, you know, there's been a lot of changes with mushroom revival. We have new employees, new products, new products and development. We have a lot going on. I'm actually writing a book right now. And it should be released early next year in 2023. Hoping to release this episode, actually, the day that I'm recording it, but we'll see what happens. And so I'm busy in book writing mode. And I've been just taking time we have new people editing this podcast. So hopefully they do a good job this season. And I've been busy in the background, you know, creating a whole new list of guests to bring on the show, and now have a backlog of a bunch of different episodes. So now can take a little break from recording and know that you'll have an episode, hopefully one a week for the next indefinite future. So I'm so excited. You know, we no longer have Lyra as a co host, it'll just be me. So if you've loved her sweet voice that is very soothing. I'm not gonna lie, apologies, you're gonna get my nasally voice. And I do say I'm a lot I'm working on it. But it will be a fun time. And we'll geek out together and have a blast. So if you're new to the show, my name is Alex Dora. I'm your host. And we bring on guests from all around the world to geek out about the powers of mushrooms and fungi, from functional benefits to psychedelic benefits to ecological roles to new biotechnology, that is saving the world you name it, from niche to mainstream all topics that has to do with fungi. Now, today, this episode will you know as you can tell, I'm just catching up to speed. But I'll give an auditory recap of a class that I usually teach. And I've been teaching for years, functional mushrooms one on one, and I've never recorded it as a podcast. So I'm just going to go through my slides right now and hopefully give as much auditory descriptions as possible as you can't see this slideshow. And it'll be fun. So if you're new to functional mushrooms, this will be just a one on one class. And let's get right into it. But first and foremost, if you'd like the show, and you want to support it, we have website mushroom You know, we try our best to have as much descriptions and links to all the shownotes to our podcast. We have a whole line of functional mushroom products, from gummies, to tinctures, to capsules to powders. And we have a bunch of blog posts as well. So let's get into it. If people don't know my name is Alex door and I'm the founder and CEO of mushroom revival a four year old functional mushroom brand and we made the country's first and only certified organic USDA certified organic cordyceps militaris mushroom farm actually in the Americas and the largest we have been working tremendously on making world renowned extracts of functional mushrooms to help revive people's health. With the power of mushrooms. I've been a researcher all over the globe educator and commercial mushroom grower for the last almost 10 years now growing 1000s of pounds of mushrooms a week of all Gourmet and functional mushrooms and wrote a book got my degree in mycology, and wrote a book on micro remediation which I studied for many years, how fungi can degrade toxic waste in our environment, and so many other really fun things with fungi. So that's a little bit of my background. And now you'll get a little bit of a background of mushrooms. They come in all shapes and sizes and colors and some glow in the dark and some don't even look like our typical cap and stem mushrooms and they could have hairs on them and nets that come down and they look like stars and they're all over the place and some look very alien. Some can be a fraction of the size of your fingernail and some could be you know, three feet high. They are small and large and everything in between. And the interesting thing is that we think they're so alien but we share over 50% of our DNA with fungi and fungi are actually more closely related to animals than we are to plants and They might actually be aliens. You know, there's a theory called panspermia, that life originated outside of this planet. And, you know, we see time and time again that they're one of the most resilient organisms on the planet. And it isn't too far off to consider the theory that maybe spores of fungi were wedged into an asteroid that hit Planet Earth billions of years ago, there's a case where some researchers off the coast of Japan, were doing underwater, rock drillings and they're bringing up samples from underneath the Pacific Ocean. And they found over 69 different species of fungi underneath the ocean, living in hibernation, one of the species with schizo philam species, and they found that the spores were 20 million years old, just in hibernation living underneath the ocean. And when they germinated, those spores on a petri plate, a nutrient dish of ag are the spores germinated into mycelium, the roots of a mushroom and actually fruited mushrooms. This is like finding a 20 million year old apple tree seed underneath the ocean, planting in soil, it not only grows an apple tree, but actual apples that you can pick off. So it really shows the incredible resilience of fungi, you know, they've been found in Antarctica in the snow. You know, there's fungi that are in the ocean around Antarctica that have tails that actually swim and kill Tardigrades are one of the most resilient organisms on the planet that can survive and lava. And fungi can swim after them in the freezing cold, you know, ocean of Antarctica and kill them. There's been dozens of fungi found and trinomial one of the most radioactive places on planet Earth, where it's very hard for organisms to survive. And they've actually not only survived but thrived in those conditions, eating only radioactive isotopes, and so they can survive in crazy radioactive places. There's studies that show that researchers threw pieces of lichen out of the International Space Station, and brought them back on board after X amount of months, and they continue growing like nothing happened. And there's different studies that show, you know, fungi thriving in simulated space conditions, and they're able to survive in these crazy isolated, extreme conditions. So it's not too far off to think that they're able to survive in an asteroid hit planet Earth, and colonize planet Earth and be one of the most prolific organisms on our planet today. Now, one of the first organisms that we see on land, or the cyanobacteria mounds about 3.5 billion years ago, and they're just poking out of the water. And it takes a few billion years before we find evidence of fungi in kind of these low marine like environments, maybe a creek bed or something like that. And they were found to be a billion years old. Now the oldest terrestrial fungi ever found was about 10 million years ago in the Congo. And so you know, fungi, and these two cases were just found. So we might find some tomorrow, that are 2 billion years old, you know, these are new species that we're just finding. And we might find evidence of older species. Now around 700 million years ago, we find the first evidence of lichen. Now, lichen you might see on park benches, or on the bark of trees, this, you know, green to yellow to blue colored kind of frilly, kind of mosaic, interesting organism on the sides of various different things. And it's a combination of a couple of different types of fungi and a sign of bacteria and algae. And so this is our first evidence of kind of a symbiotic terrestrial organism on planet Earth. Now, around 470 to 500 million years ago, we get the first evidence of early land plants and mycorrhizal fungi. So a combination of these plants in symbiosis with fungi. Now, these early plants didn't even have roots. And these fungi acted as early plant roots. And over time the plants develop these roots. And now the plants that we know today have plant roots, but the micro Raizel fungi acts as almost like an extension to those roots around 430 million years ago, we get these large structures called proto tax IDs. Now when first researchers were discovering them, they didn't really know what they were there were these huge, almost 30 meter tall structures, they're like, oh, is this a bone? Is this an early tree? And when they did further analysis, they figured out it was about 90% fungal. And so these were huge lichenoid structures that you know, some scientists and researchers think our early prototypes of the trees that we know today. Now over time, we get, you know, these trees and these roots start to develop, and more plants start to colonize our this rocky substance which was early Earth and early land and the fungi cert to to dive deeper into this rocky structure secrete enzymes and mineralized this rocky surface of our Earth and make soil that we know today now run 420 million years ago, we get arthropods start coming up on lands and arthropods and arthropods include insects, and insects love to burrow underground, especially ants to make their underground sanctuaries and through the various mass extinctions, or when food is scarce, or, you know, back in the day when there wasn't much life on planet Earth. One of the main food sources was nibbling on plant roots, especially also nibbling on fungi. Now, in defense, fungi starts secreting all this chemical warfare, including or ghadimi, one of the precursors to LSD, we see, you know, evidence of all these, you know, drugs including amphetamines, cathinones psilocybin, ibotenic acid which gets converted into moscato, which is, you know, one of compounds, psychedelic compounds in the famous Amanita muscaria, red and white mushroom that is all over around 115 million years ago, we get the first evidence of a cap and stem mushroom, you know, a mushroom that we know. And around the same time, about 101 213 million years ago, we get the first evidence of corte SEPs appearing. So entomopathogenic fungi, fungi that are attacking insects. So it seems to fit this narrative that, you know, over time, these insects were eating the fungi, or were eating the plant roots. And as a defense, in addition to this chemical warfare, the fungi were opportunistic, and able to find a new food source, which was the insects themselves. And so they started taking over these insects, and started secreting all these crazy compounds. Now, over time, you know, as these mushrooms are starting to develop, you know, these mushrooms are starting to break away from their plant allies and start, you know, breaking from their mycorrhizal connections that they've had for hundreds of millions of years, and are now finding new hosts, whether that's insects or dung, or, you know, just in the soil or wood, SAP prophetic fungi, they're starting to make their way into more ecological niches. Now, humans have been around for maybe modern humans, maybe 10 million years, give or take. And over time, you know, there's this theory called the stone date theory, that our evolution was spurred by the ingestion of psilocybin containing mushrooms, as we're hunters and gatherers, and we're following, you know, various animals that drop dung, and we're following the dung to track the animals. And we're looking down and maybe we're super hungry, we haven't eaten in days, and we're looking to get that big score of a hunk of meat to feed our family, we look down, there's mushrooms growing out of the dung, we might see another animal eat that mushroom be fine. They don't get poisoned. And so we say, hey, that might be food for us, we eat the mushroom. And we have this psychedelic trip, we have this profound experience that were unable to communicate because language hadn't been developed yet beyond, you know, visceral grunts. And therefore, that is the catalyst for us to develop languages to develop religion to develop these mechanisms in which we can communicate these cathartic experiences. Now, along the same lines of us, you know, looking for food, a lot of our early primate relatives eat a large amount of insects as a big part of our diet, and potentially, you know, as our early primate relatives, once in a while, ate a insect that was infected by this fungi and the fungi was secreting all these different alkaloids. into the insect, which we then consumed. So psilocybin was developed by fungi as a defense mechanism to lower the appetite of, say termites or, you know, other different insects that were competing against the wood, or competing against dumb, whatever food source it was, and altering their chemistry and behavior. So the fungi would therefore have more food. Now, if humans are eating those insects that just injected with psilocybin, we would also have those experiences as well, we would have to eat a lot of them. But that's what we were doing. We were eating insects to fill our appetite. Now, there's no evidence of us actually doing that. But, you know, it would make for a fun story. And it probably happened one time out of the 10 million years of our evolution. Now, our first real evidence that humans ate and ingested mushrooms was about 17,000 BCE, with the red lady of LM Iran, in Spain. And she had two species of mushroom spores wedged in her teeth. And there are both edible species. And that showed that, you know, she was commonly eating and ingesting mushrooms is a big part of her diet over, you know, the next 10s of 1000s of years, we see evidence of mushroom themed art pop up all around the world, the first being testily cave drugs in northern Algeria, at 4713. Give or take BC, where we get this mushroom be shaman, and it's a beautiful work of art, we get these other, you know, mushroom figures in the same cave. But the mushroom bee shaman is pretty famous of this human like figure with a behead covered in mushrooms. And there's a theory that, as we were leaving Ethiopia and moving, you know, north to climates that didn't have as many psilocybin mushrooms, we would use the honey of bees to store the psilocybin for long term, and that was called Blue honey. And therefore we honored the be as kind of this part of this sacred ritual of ingesting psilocybin for almost religious purposes. And so that was kind of the thought process of why this mural was made in this cave. But who knows, we'll never know we get other cave paintings in Spain and 4000 bc we get evidence of Arts here at The Iceman that was found it was the oldest naturally preserved human found in the Swiss Alps, and he was found with two different types of mushrooms on his body, the birch poly poor, and the tinder conch, both mushrooms that grow birch trees, and they theorized that he was using the birch polypore to clear intestinal parasites in his body. And they also theorized that he was using the tinder conch to not only carry around embers of a fire so he could stay warm, but also mounted into leather for various different uses. And also, he was found with early tattoos on meridian points of in his body and they think that he was using the smoldering embers of the mushroom and holding it under those specific meridian points. To have energy flow similar to moxibustion in acupressure acupuncture, to help with an early form of arthritis, joint pain. Now we get mushroom heads and different hieroglyphs and drawings in Egypt, popping up around 1800 BCE, we get petroglyphs in Siberia, around 1000 BC, we get, you know, all these different mushrooms stones in Guatemala and around Central and South America start popping up and around 470 BCE, we get you know, this story of potentially this fungal brew in Greece being pretty influential for you know, a lot of the folklore and mythology around Greece at that time. Around fifth century BC we get Hippocrates quoted the father of modern Western medicine, talking about the American mushroom as a cure all. And this is the first evidence that we have in written text of the earliest written text of functional mushrooms being talked about. And now there's probably earlier examples that were probably destroyed maybe in the Library of Alexandria and Egypt or in other places that were destroyed with colonization. But this is the earliest saved example. Now with the turn of the century and 20 ad, we get to variable Ciana and entomopathogenic fungi being talked about in Shannon's Materia Medica in 200 ad, you know, we get mentioned Reishi PORIA Cocos tremella and more mushrooms we get cordyceps a KDA being talked about through seventh century AD in China, in the eighth century, we get ovo cordset Senescence being listed in the Tibetan Materia Medica. And, you know, really, you know, all these mushrooms are just being talked about for the first time that we can find evidence of in these materia Medicas. And, you know, through the turn of the early 1900s, we start seeing scientists isolate specific compounds from specific fungi and using them in practice. So common examples would be ergotamine A, which was used for headaches was isolated by Sandoz. We get Alexander Fleming producing penicillin, in 1928. In 1938, we get LSD being discovered in 1971, we get cyclosporine, A, which was isolated from another entomopathogenic, fungi, Tellico, caladium, and Fladam. And that, you know, pretty much everyone who's gotten an organ transplant has been given cyclosporine A, to suppress their immune system enough, so your body will accept this new organ and not reject it. And so that just keeps happening until the turn of the 20th century. I think I said that right until the end of the 1900s. And, you know, we get all these different compounds being isolated. Now, in the United States and North America and the Americas, in general, we really start to see a revival in our appreciation towards functional mushrooms. Now in China, they've been using functional mushrooms for over 5000 years. It's nothing new for them, and they have a booming industry for they have been for a very long time. They have rich history and folklore around it. For us in North America, a lot of that history and wisdom has unfortunately been wiped out with colonization. And a lot of that knowledge has been suppressed, or intentionally wiped out with colonization. And so now we're starting to see a revival in our appreciation for this knowledge. And really a rekindling with nature itself. And so Fast Company has been written about is called the Shroom. Boom expected to hit $50 billion. In next few years. Forbes is writing tons of articles about it saying mushrooms are so hot right now, Whole Foods is saying customers are buzzing, it was the top food trend about four years in a row. You know, we get different celebrities like Kim Kardashian and Gwyneth Paltrow. And, you know, Willow Smith and all these people starting talking about the use of mushrooms in their daily life, and it being totally beneficial for them. And it's really growing. And certain statistics show year by year sales showing that certain functional mushrooms are increasing up to 811% year over year. I mean, it's incredible. Now, this is kind of where my story comes in. And I gave a little intro in the very beginning. But my story with mushrooms started in early 2013, where I was enrolled in college and it was my first week of orientation week. And so there wasn't classes, and everyone was just getting oriented and meeting people. And at that time, I smoked a lot of weed and I you know, wanted to fit in and want to be cool. And so I stumbled upon someone and they were eating mushrooms. And so that was the first time I ever ate them. And I was curious about them. And so I asked, you know how much you know, can I get some? And they came back with a full red plastic Solo cup filled with dried mushrooms to the brim and say okay, how much you know, maybe you don't have a bag like that. That works. That's the only thing you have on you. And he kind of paused for a second and he said, If you eat this whole thing on the spot, I'll give it to you for free. And I didn't have a schedule at that point. You know, I had no classes I was totally free. I is pretty experienced with smoking weed at that point. So is experienced with altered states or so I thought and I said hey, yeah, why not? You know, fuck it. Let's do it. And you know, needless to say, for people who don't know how much you know, a typical dose of Magic Mushrooms are normally a beginner first time would start with maybe two to 3.5 grams and that that's a powerful amount for a new person that they will see visuals I mean it will be a powerful experience for them. five grams is considered a heroic dose by one of the main psycho not advocates of mushrooms Terence McKenna, who was you know, he said five grams in total darkness is like complete ego death. I mean it will be world shattering it will be a huge macro Oh, heroic dose now I measured how much a full plastic red solo cup was for dried mushrooms, it was about 30 grams. So this is, you know, six times more than the massive heroic dose that the main psychonaut was advocating. This is like the top of the tear level. I did six times more than that as my first dose. And let me tell you, it totally shattered every figment of my existence. 1000 fold, you know, there was no concept of me anymore. And I wasn't only seeing the birth and death of the universe, I was feeling it within fractions of a second, you know, seeing and feeling past lives. And, you know, just having cosmic downloads. At that point. I didn't know anything about mushrooms. And I was seeing through the soil and seeing mycorrhizal fungi and getting downloads of how mycorrhizal fungi worked before I even knew what mycorrhizal fungi was or the concept of it. And to be honest, I passed out at the peak, my brain couldn't handle it, I couldn't handle I just passed out. And for a week after that, I just kind of stayed in my room. And I didn't know how to comprehend life at the end of it. But I was on a couple different pharmaceuticals at the time, one for anxiety and another for depression. And I was also you know, smoking a lot of cigarettes at the point. And you know, drinking heavily and you know, just in a pretty bad place in my life. And from that experience, I was able to stop cold turkey, my pharmaceutical medication and, you know, it took me a few months but I was able to stop smoking cigarettes, I was able to stop drinking so much and have a healthier relationship with alcohol. I was able to shift my friend group, I was able to get into, you know, chi gong and yoga and meditation and you know, healthy eating and everything and really changed my life. 180 degrees had a huge proponent was that experience and so from that experience, because it was so major for me, I you know, wanted to dedicate my life further to studying mushrooms. I said, Hey, if these are just coming out of the ground, what other benefits can mushrooms have, apart from psychedelic mushrooms and so I bought every single book that I could on Amazon, I signed up for every single class around the country. I got internships, I worked for free at local mushroom farms. I literally tried to absorb as much information in the shortest amount of time as possible. And that's all I did. 24/7 was just reading, you know, reading books going out in the woods I was reading. As I was looking for mushrooms. I was just I couldn't get enough. I was like this totally changed my life. I need to absorb as much information as possible. It led me to an internship at a functional mycelium company and I learned how to you know, isolate fungi in the lab and work with Petri plates and sterile techniques and saw you know how to be mycologists in the laboratory on a mass scale. It led me to go on a trip in 2015 I believe maybe it was the end of 2014 but maybe 2015 to Ecuador, and I was studying biodiversity in different ecosystems and got to study at ants or leaf cutter ants. I'm sure people have seen them. Maybe in movies or potentially in person. These lines of ants carrying leaves on their back and what people don't realize is they're taking these leaves back to their nest. They're chewing them up. They have an antibiotic chemical in their saliva, and they're able to take a little portion of a local fungi grow the mycelium are the roots of the mushrooms off of this leaf litter Munch that they made this mound and grow mycelium for food and they just eat the mycelium and it keeps growing and it's a soul food source for the ant colony. And they're actually one of the most sustainable, quote unquote mushroom farmers out there. And they only take a fraction of the leaves from each tree and are able to grow this mycelium and from our research, we found that the average weight of these leaves was about point O three grams per leaf that they were carrying in they averaged an 11 hour workday and that the biggest nest that we're studying, brought in about over 1500 pounds of leaves per year that they're converting into fungal food, which is pretty crazy. Now on the flip side, because we're in the deep Amazon rainforest of Ecuador, it was unbelievably biodiverse and you know there are mutualistic benefits with fungi and insects and then there's quote unquote parasitic instances and you know I talked about this a little bit before of Cordyceps are entomopathogenic fungi, fungi that attack insects in the wild and take over their bodies and spread out their heads. I was finding a lot of those in the wild. And this was just blowing my mind, literally not as probably as much as the insects, but it was right out of a sci fi film. It was crazy. I mean, I was blown away, and it was the coolest thing that I could find. And they're really small and hard to find. So when finding them it was that much more exciting and exhilarating to actually find it after hours and hours of searching for this little tiny thing in this crazy chaotic environment. So was finding them on weevils was finding them on beetles on locusts on grasshoppers on Mars and all these different insects and was the coolest thing and was really enthralled with all the different ways that fungi showed up in the environment. And it wasn't until we were at Yasuni National Park, which is rated one of if not the most biodiverse region on the planet per square foot. It was also ran by this oil company. And to even enter Yasuni National Park, we had to go through a metal detector, we had to put our bags through an x ray, all being operated by these guards who worked for the oil company who had semi automatic rifles around their torso. And they patrolled the area. And they were extremely strict. And they were also you know, drilling for oil in leaving these on line pits of oil around. And so on a walk one day, I, you know, saw this Jeep you know, with armed guards in the back and they were patrolling. And once I saw them go around the corner, I went to this spot that I knew I wasn't supposed to go and I saw this unlined pit of oil in the distance, but I saw, you know, those multicolored steam fumes coming up in the jungle, and I saw all the plants around it just dying and dead. And it just broke my heart. And I was able to interview the indigenous people that were living in that area of Ecuador, and from the grandchildren to the grandparents have all their different, you know, experiences of living in this area and having this oil company come in, and you know, what the effects that had on their life. And, you know, it was devastating to hear. And, you know, seeing that firsthand and seeing the effects from these people were just, it was heartbreaking. And you know, I happen to bring a book on mycology along on this trip. And part of the one chapter in the book was all about micro remediation, and how they were using fungi to degrade oil spills in nature. And I was like, wow, you know, this could be a solution, you know, and flashback 10 years, probably 15 years earlier, I was actually in the Amazon different region of the Amazon in Ecuador with my family and I was adding probably the best day of my life. You know, I'm I feel like I've always been totally enthralled with the jungle and I've always had stuffed animals and monkeys and little toys have poisoned dart frogs. And you know, I've always I had jungle wallpaper as a kid and I had, you know, like, leopard print that covers and you know, I had literally a lamp that looked like a palm tree. I've always really been into the jungle. And so when I was there, it was like holy shit, I'm actually hear hear all the birds chirping and I saw translators, I was just in my element, but I'll never forget this just like Soul. numbing sound of a saw happening in the background. I was like, Wait, what is that? And you know, realizing that people were cutting down trees and I was like, holy shit. How could someone do that in the most beautiful biodiverse region on the planet? How can someone just cut it down and you know, make dams and drill for oil and mine and do all these things that would destroy life. And here I was almost 15 years later, having the same realizations and realizing that fungi could give a helping hand in this. And so whether it was in Amazon or whether it was somewhere else, or in my backyard, you know, the fact that fungi could help in you know, remediating toxic waste wherever it was in the world was really exciting for me. And, you know, it felt like this was something that I could actually do to make a positive impact in the world. And so I changed my major when I got home, and I studied micro remediation. And for my final thesis, I wrote this 230 page book on micro remediation, and got grant money. I started doing research on growing oyster mushrooms on cigarette butts, kind of full circle from being able to quit smoke buying cigarettes from using mushrooms. And then now I was using mushrooms to degrade the toxins in the cigarette butts. And, you know, I found that the enzymes of this Pleurotus ostreatus, or oyster mushrooms was able to fully remediate all the, I think it was 12 or 16, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, which are carcinogenic compounds inside, you know, cigarette butts. And they're able to fully remediate it with under two weeks, which was so profound and you know, had all these visions of loading up an airplane with 3000 gallons of these enzymes and dropping it over oil spills and all these different things. Around the same time of writing my book, and doing this research, I got bit by a tick, and the Tick was carrying Lyme disease. And for those who know it is unbelievably debilitating, and I went from being extremely energetic to extremely just debilitated, I was stuck in bed all day, I just barely, you know, getting up to pour myself a bowl of cereal from the next room was huge. Like that was like all the effort that I could put in my body for hours on end. And that felt like a big leap in my day. And I was young, I was in my early 20s. And so that shouldn't be happening. And some days, you know, I'd have painful, inflamed joints. And you know, the day that I would happen in my hip, I would struggle to walk up a flight of stairs, and I had to, you know, each stair would take me like 10 seconds, each stair and I would hobble up, and it would have to take a break and, you know, hold my head and then it was like, okay, one leg at a time to get up the next stair. And it was like this feat, you know, and you know, some days in my arm, I couldn't raise my arm above my shoulder, and it really shifted my life and a whole web ad. And so through my research, I dedicated to living a healthier way of life. And through my dedication, I researched about functional mushrooms, and I found that functional mushrooms were supportive for overall health. And from there, you know, it was this full circle moment of, you know, fungi had the ability to take care of this concept called the three homes, you know, is the body, the earth in the mind. And for me, it was the body, you know, helping support my health on a physical level, the earth with micro remediation, and the mind or the soul, as you know, with psilocybin mushrooms helping me be a better person and you know, have healthier habits and just on a soul level, be closer to spirit and or God or whatever you want to say now around the same time that I was reading my book, you know, I was coming back from Ecuador around you know, 2015, and was curious about what different types of cordyceps that we had in the US. One of the most famous species that we have here in the US is cordyceps militaris, which, you know, we been growing in the US since 1894. Because of you know, the research at Cornell University with Miss Greene was able to successfully grow the first quarter such militaris in the US. And from that point from 1890. For the next couple 100 years or whatever we've been able to develop the ways that we can grow this mushroom quite easily at a commercial scale, thanks to a lot of benefits and insights from particularly China really was the main driver of pushing this forward. And, you know, particularly in the 1980s, they developed these techniques that were transformational for growing quadriceps at a large scale very easily. So I was able to use a lot of those techniques to grow my own batch at home and you know, for my own self to help with my energy levels to supporting my immune system. And from there, I just got really into growing them in symbiosis with plants, and trying to mimic these bio diverse systems that I was seeing in Ecuador. And after I graduated college, I realized that I didn't want to be a researcher stuck in a lab researching micro remediation. And you know, I didn't go to school for chemistry, I didn't go to school for all these different things. And that path seemed like maybe in the future, I'll get there. But it didn't seem like a path that I was extremely excited about, because I realized that I would need to go on to my PhD to actually do something with it. And I would really be cleaning up the mess for these big chemical companies, but I didn't want to be their personal janitor. And so looking back, I said, Hey, what are the other two homes that I can work on? The one being psilocybin and I would love to work with that and give it to people but it was illegal, where I was living in the United States. And so I said, Okay, the other realm that I could focus on is fun. cochineal mushrooms. And that has been incredibly beneficial for me. It's something that I could do for a living and help people and feel really good about. And I have all the skills to make a company and grow the mushrooms, and I have a background in herbalism that I've been studying for many years, I can definitely make this work. And so that was the beginning stages of mushroom revival of, you know, had this little lab in my living room. And it was just on, you know, a plastic folding table. And I just, I made it work, I was renting a house at the time, and I just set it up in the living room with consent of the landlord, and my roommates. And I copied a key to a local university lab and I went there, I took the night shift, so I wouldn't cause any drama. And I had this night shift from like, you know, midnight until four in the morning, where I would use their equipment and start growing these mushrooms, mainly quarter steps, but you know, is working with a few different functional species at the time going out in the woods and forging the rest, and, you know, saving up money, so I can buy my own equipment to you know, build this company. And I started saving up and I bought one autoclave. And then I bought another one, another one, and I had it for running different circuits around the house and a, you know, would always, you know, trip the circuit and have to run up the stairs and do all this stuff. And it was crazy. And so my mushroom endeavors was spreading from the living room, into the dining room, into the garage, into the barn out back into my room into my car, until my roommate sat me down, and they said, hey, you know, this is kind of expanding really quickly. And you might want to invest in a space, you know, they said it pretty nicely, but pretty firmly, like, hey, you know, you're taking up a lot of space, it's time to take the leap. And so I did, I found this beautiful space, you know, maybe 510 minutes away, it was this beautiful Amish barn. And it was right off the highway, tons of parking and tons of space and found it at a fraction of the price of anywhere else I could find. And so it was a steal. And so I built the cordyceps farm there. And at that time, you know, didn't have a lot of money. And so I was, instead of shelves, you know, I bought these shoe racks online that, you know, were super flimsy and super cheap. And I nailed them into planks of wood and drilled these wheels on it. So it was a moving rack. And that's what I did on a budget and it had these string lights. And I you know, was using cake pans to save some money. And I was trying as many different varieties and styles of cultivation as possible, was the first in the country to grow cordyceps in these bins or mono tubs. And without my knowledge there is actually a big organic mushroom farm about seven minutes down the road. And I reached out to them and said, hey, you know, I didn't know you were so close. That's so cool. You know, I'm growing these mushrooms, you're growing these totally different ones. We're not competing against each other. I see you have this giant autoclave. It's probably 30 feet long, you could walk inside of it. And it's used for sterilizing mushroom substrate. And I said, Hey, no, are you using that all seven days a week? And they said, No, we're only using it in the weekdays. And I said, Hey, you know, how much would it be for me to rent it out? You know, every other weekend or something or one weekend a month? They said, Yeah, you know, like, you know, we found a good price that worked for us. And that's what we did, you know, once every other weekend or so we rented this out and we had these volunteers come and, you know, we were able to grow extremely fast. And that came with downsides because we were a little over our head and so some batches completely failed and we had, you know, huge amounts of try koderma And we I probably grown more Trickett Derma mold that I have actually mushrooms. I know I'm a serious mold farmer. If anyone needs consulting, I know how to grow a heck of a ton of mold, if you're ever looking for that. And so, you know at one point we dialed in this method of growing in these jars. And each batch in this big autoclave, we were able to fit about 5154 jars per patch, which is a lot of mason jars, let me tell you and so, you know, we would fill them with rice, we'd fill them with the liquid nutrient mix, we would drill a hole in the top of the lid and fill it with pillow stuffing. And then we would sterilize it after X amount of hours we would go on the other hand which was a sterile laboratory would pull the jars out and then we would inject them with the liquid mycelium or the roots of the cordyceps mushroom. And then we'd load it all into a U haul drive it seven minutes down the road, load it in our incubation station which was a cool dark space. And then two weeks later we would roll it into our fruiting room which we use cannabis lights which were these a combination of red blue and white lights which are All together made this like pink spectrum. And it looked like you're walking into a spaceship, we had all this mylar around this reflective material all around. So it's just like this pink light. With all these jars of these weird Cheeto looking mushrooms with this reflective material all around, it really looked like you were walking into a spaceship portal with all these alien creatures in jars, it was really cool to walk into. And so at a certain point, we were, you know, running batches back to back to back, we had about 15 to 20,000 Mason jars all, you know, ready to harvest. And this was the first time we're overhead. And because we had 10s of 1000s of these mason jars to get the narrow mouth version instead of the wide mouth was about a third of the price. And it made a huge difference when you're buying 10s of 1000s of these jars. And so I went with the narrow mouth version. Now, I thought that I was so proud of myself for getting this version. And I was like, wow, you know, until harvest day. And so we went to harvest and that first person tried to stick their hand in and went up Aaron, like, what's up, and their hand got stuck. And they weren't able to pull out the mushrooms and we just were like, oh shit, you know, we didn't think about that. And so we brought out these knives. And we're like, okay, you got to cut the cakes in half and kind of wiggled them out. That worked for about five minutes, until the metal knife started chipping the glass and still, you know, one broke in someone's hands. And I was like, Nope, we got to stop that. You know, they were wearing gloves that no injuries whatsoever. But we were like, oh my god, what are we going to do. And so we found these food safe plastic knives online. And they're like for kids learning how to cook. And so we got a bunch of those. And you know, we went right back to it, where we were using these little, they were all these different colors, they were like green and blue and yellow. They were for kids. And we use those. And we had to cut each cake in half, and it took so long. But we got all the mushrooms harvested. And then it came to time where he had all like 10s of 1000s of dirty jars. And we're like, ah, oh my God, I didn't even think of that. And so I had to hire people that all day long, all they did was wash jars. And I had to buy this electric motor powered mason jar cleaner. And we had this, I had to buy this huge, like 200 gallon feed trough from this farm. And you know, we filled it with soapy water with this electric motor like scrubby machine and it was insane. You know how long it all took. And so, because of this, we're like, we got to find a better method. This is so labor intensive, and it's just not worth it. And so we made the dumpling method. And so this was a method that we actually published online, totally open source totally for free. Every little bit of this technique we recorded, we detailed and we published a video on YouTube under mushroom revival. So if you're looking to make an organic cordyceps farm on a large scale, this is the method that we used to build our farm. And we did that for a couple of reasons. You know, we had a couple advisors wanting us to patent our farm technique. And you know, it just didn't really feel right to me, especially, you know, being a citizen science test and being really into psychedelics and you know, open source everything, it just didn't really feel right, didn't want to keep this knowledge away from other people. And other people said, hey, you know, you should open source patent it. So a big pharmaceutical company doesn't patent your technique, and prevent other people from doing it. You know, we decided not to do that either. And just hoping that people will be good people. And hopefully that never happens. But it's totally out there for people to enjoy and learn and make their own organic farm. And so we use these big bins, these big Sterlite plastic bins, and we actually used these dough kneading bags made of silicone, and we're able to you can watch the video on YouTube, I won't go too much in depth about it. But that was the technique that we use, and it saved us a ton of time, and we're able to grow our farm rapidly. Now, there's other amazing farms in China that I actually got to visit in 2019, where they're growing millions and millions of dried pounds of cordyceps a year, just you know, at a million times our scale that we were and their techniques are unbelievable. And there's tons of ways that they're growing mushrooms. I sell fully automatic farms there. I mean, they're like a 1000s of years ahead of where we are here in the States. And so that's cordyceps militaris You know, we focus on that mushroom because there wasn't really anybody doing it in the States. And so we kind of wanted to pioneer and do something that was the first. And so we were able to do a lot of cool research with Cordis apps that nobody else had done before a lot of new techniques and, you know, able to push that industry forward just a little bit further, which, you know, I hope another reason that we fully open source or techniques was that we wanted other people to take the torch that were smarter than us that had maybe more resources, but maybe not. And, you know, push it further, you know, we knew our technique wasn't perfect, we hope that people take it and just keep pushing this forward. So we can develop as a community. So quadriceps militaris has been used for so long. And it's become really popular in the athlete realm for people wanting to support their energy levels, athletic performance, lung capacity, sexual activity, to you know, all functional mushrooms, I have to preface this, all functional mushrooms are adaptogenic. And adaptogen means an herb or a mushroom that supports the body's natural ability to combat occasional stress and fatigue, which I know for one I could use more of, and you know, probably everyone on this planet earth could use more adaptogens in their everyday life. And, you know, cordyceps is a prime example of that. Also, you know, all functional mushrooms have a supportive quality to your immune system, because functional mushrooms are packed with these compounds called 1316, beta glucans. And you know, beta glucans are a type of polysaccharide along sugar chain. And you know, in cereal grains and other plants, they have 1314 beta glucans. But in mushrooms and fungi, specifically, it's 1316, which are extensively studied for their immune supportive qualities. So all the mushrooms that I'm about to talk about are adaptogenic and support the immune system, the next being reishi. So, you know, the Latin name, as a lot of mushrooms are with the advancements of DNA analysis, we're starting to break up the Latin names into very smaller segments. And what was earlier considered one Latin name is probably 20 different ones. So what was considered ganoderma lucidum is now broken up into various different species of reishi. And so in China, it's ganoderma, Lincolnshire, or, you know, other species in the United States, we see you know, ganoderma su gay or ganoderma Oregon ence and so a lot of the scientific studies fall under the Latin name ganoderma lucidum. But they could be using ganoderma literature or another species. But at that time, the DNA analysis wasn't there yet, but reishi in and of itself, it's the number one herb in traditional Chinese herbalism. It's mostly used by people now as a prime adaptogen. But also to support a sense of calm, you know, it's used for a lot of people before bed as supporting your body's natural transition to good night's sleep, and healthy dream state. And so that's really important, you know, to feel energized and feel good the next day is to have, you know, optimal healthy sleep. And you know, it's best known for a class of triterpenes or bitter tasting compounds called ganoderma ik acids. And you know, we'll get into more about those compounds in a little bit. But reishi is spectacular for supporting the immune system for supporting lung health, cardiovascular health, heart health, and all around just an amazing, amazing mushroom lion's mane. Another incredibly famous mushroom that the Latin name is her sium Aaron ACS and it is called the Smart mushroom or the brain mushroom and it looks like this white, furry ball that has compounds in it that support nerve growth factor in the brain support cognitive function, memory, alertness, and all around great for supporting brain health. Chaga inonotus Obliquus it is not technically a mushroom. It is technically a canker or a conch, or some people like to refer it as a sclerotia or a hardened mass of mycelium that is formed into a new form called canker or a conch on a birch tree. And Chaga is well known for its antioxidant properties. It's great for supporting the immune system and all around I mean, it's a delicious tasting fungi that tastes amazing and coffee or tea or chai tea Chaga chai is phenomenal and it actually has I think I'm gonna butcher this but Fenelon I believe is the compound which is you know vanilla and so it has high amounts of this compound in it which makes just a delicious earthy vanilla II kind of drink that you can use over and over again and big fan of Chaga should Toki another pretty famous functional mushroom but also a famous gourmet mushroom. You know you can see it in grocery stores all around the world Lentinula adonus is a delicious mushroom one of my favorite mushrooms to eat, and also is known for you know, it's 1316 beta glucans lentinan for supporting the immune system also great for supporting liver health. And just all around amazing mushroom, my tacchi also a prime edible species delicious, one of my favorite edible species of all time. grifola frondosa is the Latin name and this grows typically at the base of oak trees, or you can find it in abundance in the Northeast of the United States. And it can grow up to you know 100 pounds and making girl huge and really just makes for a delicious meal but it's also packed with you know these 1316 beta glucans called Empty fraction and others that are world renowned for supporting the immune system. Also great and whilst studied for supporting healthy blood sugar levels and normal ranges and cholesterol levels in normal ranges. And all around amazing functional mushroom Turkey Tail also called True Metis Versa color or in some places they call it coriolus versicolor. But I think it's the more correct Latin name Trametes versicolor but teach their own Turkey tails is a beautiful looking mushroom and actually featured painting of a Turkey Tail by Martin bridge on the cover of my micro remediation book because it's such a cool mushroom not only for functional benefits but also used a lot in micro remediation. And this is known for two main classes of 1316 beta glucans called PSP and PSK. World renowned for supporting the immune system also well studied for supporting gut health PORIA Cocos or wolf aporia extensa, this is not technically a mushroom, this is technically a sclerotia. It looks like a yam, this underground kind of tuber so to speak. And it is just this condensed food source that you know the fungi uses and it stores underground and it is used in traditional Chinese herbalism for a very long time. And it is just all around a fantastic fungi for supporting the immune system and also all around mood. It also helps flush water in the body. And all around you know is one of my favorites. It's great. The next mushroom love to talk about is Mishima phellinus. Linteus is Latin name also called women's Island. It's pretty famous in Japan for its immune supporting qualities and overall supporting women's health. The last mushroom that I want to highlight is tremella tremella fuciformis. This is actually a parasitic fungi that attacks another type of fungi, similar to cordyceps. But instead of an insect ID attacks another fungi. And it's kind of this gelatinous looking mushroom that looks like a loofa sponge that is really jelly like and it's incredibly supportive for skin health and hydration. And you actually see it in a lot of skincare formulas and even body washes and you know, moisturizers, etc. Where they incorporate this ingredient because it can hold up to 500 times its weight in water. So that's a basic list of 10 different mushrooms that you should know, that we work with at mushroom revival, and they're fantastic fungi that I think will be good allies in anybody's life. So this begs the questions. Is it legit? You know, are functional mushrooms the real deal? Is it a load of baloney and pseudoscience or is it they're actually real backing to it? So, you know, they've been used for over 5000 years and maybe millions depending on if, you know, the stoned ape theory holds true. That doesn't mean it's valid, but it shows that it's relatively safe for human consumption. We've been using it for a while and people from all around the world have claimed you know benefit from using it. There are over 600 human trial white papers out there and over 40 of which are on the NIH website. Some of the studies are made Massive and include up to 68,000 participants involved. And a study by wasa in 2017 said that they estimate over 130 different functional benefits from functional mushrooms. So to really understand functional mushrooms and you know products out there, you really have to understand the basic lifecycle of fungi and mushrooms as a whole. So this is kind of the basic lifecycle of a typical cap and stem facility or my Kota that you might find at a grocery store like should taki so for shitai you know, they have gills underneath the cap, and underneath, they basically shoot out the spores, the spores land in an environment, they grow into hyphae. They come together and combined into mycelium, which is kind of the roots of the mushroom, and then mycelium excrete enzymes to start metabolizing their food and the mycelium grows until it's at a point where it's ready to grow mushrooms and mushrooms. They're pretty much their role is to spread more DNA in the ecosystem and spread more spores. Now to grow mushrooms. Typically, a mushroom farmer would start with either the spores or bits of mycelium to grow out onto a grain substrate, they might start on a petri plate, but eventually for most mushrooms out there, they'll grow something called grain spawn, and grain spawn is whether it's rye berries, or oats or sometimes rice, where the mycelium will grow and kind of make this temp a if anyone knows what temp is. If they don't, you could probably ask for it at your local grocery store to kind of get a concept of what this will look like. Or look up mushroom grain spawn on Google images to kind of see a picture of what this looks like. But you know a lot of times is grown into plastic bag and the mycelium will fully encase this grain material and make something called greenspon. And for mushroom farmers they'll pour some of that grain spawn into a bulk substrate whether it's a lot of times wood sawdust, and then they'll put it into a fruiting chamber with humidity and lights and temperature control and they'll fruit the mushrooms and they'll harvest it now there is a way for people to grow pure mycelium in a bioreactor and this became really famous. Back in the day when we were trying to produce massive amounts of penicillin. We produced bio reactors to produce mass amounts of mycelium and fungi in these liquid bio reactors, think of a big kombucha SCOBYs basically in these liquid bio reactors of the stainless steel vats. And so unfortunately, a lot of functional mushroom companies out there will skip the stage of growing the actual mushrooms, and they'll just stop at the grain spawn stage. And this is only really a phenomena in the United States. Because you know, we're kind of 1000s of years behind in terms of mushroom farming techniques in terms of technology in terms of advancements in terms of mushroom biotechnology, and so it's pretty expensive. And labor is for us to grow mushrooms at a mass scale, and do it correctly and still kind of make a profit. So mushrooms are the second most labor intensive crop out there. It's a lot of work. And if we don't have 1000s of years of, you know, proper techniques and technology, it makes it all that much harder to really make a viable business. And so in the United States, you know a couple of companies, they decided to stop at the stage of the grain spawn. Grind up that mycelium growing on this you know rye berries or oats or rice and make a powder and then shove it into a capsule or you know a powder bottle or make a tincture out of it and label it as mushrooms you know functional mushrooms for health and wellness. Because no one knows the difference between mycelium and mushrooms. And for so many years for decades, people have gotten away with it. And there hasn't been people that have really known the difference. And even today, it's really a huge educational leap that people like myself and so many other companies out there are starting to really educate the masses of like, Hey, wait, reprogram the decades of brainwashing. It's like those aren't mushrooms in there. And not only are there no mushrooms in there, but there's a fraction of the beneficial compounds that you're actually getting for the mycelium as compared to the actual mushrooms. So, you know the FDA has been one well aware of this phenomena and, you know, they issued a statement an article in 1976. And this is CPG, Section five, eight 5.5 to five mushroom mycelium fitness for food labeling, where they reissued this in 1980. And then finally in 1988, where that's its current version from 1988. And it basically says, if you're a company and inside of your product, it has mushroom mycelium do not label your product mushrooms because this confuses the consumers and it would be illegal for you to do that. Unfortunately, there hasn't been any real repercussions even though this is a stance from the FDA. And I feel like it is a class action lawsuit about to happen unfortunately, I would hate to see that happen in our space, or to see anyone you know, be sued like this, but there's tons of companies out there, you know, labeling right on the front label, you know, certified 100 Organic mushroom powder or, you know, 2000 milligrams organic mushroom superfood per serving, you know, and then in fine print in the very back, they say other ingredients, dried myceliated brown rice, or, you know, another thing that happens is people say mycelial biomass and fruiting body or they say full spectrum is another kind of key buzzword that a lot of companies will use and, you know, they'll say, oh, yeah, we have the mushrooms. We have the enzymes, we have the mycelium, we have the spores, we have all the lifecycle of the mushroom in there. And therefore that's more superior because you're getting all the compounds, and you're getting everything in there. And doesn't that sound better? Well, in reality, and I've toured, you know, some of these companies, and I've seen firsthand of what they're claiming is the actual mushroom and there's no mushrooms in there. There's something called primordia. And that's the beginning stages where the mycelium makes a hyphal not and it will make this almost microscopic little baby bump on the mycelium. And so it hasn't grown a mushroom yet. It's not a mushroom at all. And that's why they don't call it a mushroom, it's a primordia. And they just call it that for clever wording. And even if they did grow the full mushroom, and they combined it with the mycelium and the spores, there's still a lot of that grain in there as a filler substrate. Well say that they took the grain out. And it was pure mycelium and pure mushrooms and pure spores all together in a quote unquote full spectrum product. Well, scientific studies show, you know pretty much every mushroom that you pick, and I'll get into it in a second. That they're just way more beneficial compounds in the actual mushroom compared to the mycelium. So you're actually watering your whole product down. It's like going into a dispensary if anyone is familiar with cannabis. And they hand you a bag, you know of your product, you say hey, give me a gram of you know, purple schmo purple, you know, or whatever. And they just hand you a bag. And inside is like dirt and roots, and the stem of a cannabis plant and some leaves and some twigs, you know, some stems in there, and some seeds. And you're like looking at the bag, and you're like, What the hell and there's probably like, you know, 1% of actual nug actual flower actually weed in there. And they're like, no did like this is full spectrum. You know, it has all parts of the cannabis plant in there. Even the substrate in which the cannabis is growing in where the enzymes and all the nutrients are condensing. And this is really what you want to smoke. This is all the full spectrum of compounds in it. And it's like, no, come on, like anyone would be like you are full of shit. And this is the same thing really what's going on. It's like if someone was making apple pies, and you know, one company used, you know, Pink Lady apples, and they're all organic, and they're great. And they use real full apples and their apple pies. And then, you know, another company comes along, and they slap right on the label, you know, 100% real apples that we're using for apple pie but inside, you know, in their orchard, they're just like picking up a scoop of dirt. They're taking some roots of the apple tree, they're taking some bark, some twigs and leaves. And maybe some little like, you know, sprouts, right when biting of the apples, right? You know, not even when they're full apples like just the little buds and they're breaking those off and putting them in a pie pan, baking it and calling it 100% Apple pie or saying even you know full spectrum, you're getting all the good nutrients from our apple tree. It's like come on Um, you know, so that's really what's happening in this industry. It's really unfortunate. And one might ask why, you know, and I was kind of explaining it before of, it's really expensive to make a mushroom farm. It's a lot of work. And so from a basic economic perspective, if you can cut a corner that shaves, not only months of time, but also, you know, you don't have to build a separate fruiting room with all the complexity of separate, you know, humidity control, temperature controls, humidity rigs, you don't need a set of people harvesting the mushrooms, you don't need to worry as much about biological contamination, you can actually grow more biomass per square foot, and have a more simplistic business plan and make more biomass in a month, whereas actually making the mushrooms you have to wait another two months or another month on top of that. So from a capitalist business perspective, it just makes more sense to do it that way and skip the steps, unfortunately. So that's where we're at. And it's good to be aware of it. Now, the second stage is, you know, all mushrooms are made of chitin. And chitin is the same material as lobster or shrimp shells. And, you know, they entrapped the functional compounds in these chitin layers. And so for not only cooking mushrooms, but also for functional benefits, you need to break those chitin walls to get the most amount of benefits. And inside there's polar compounds and nonpolar compounds, which are best extracted with polar and nonpolar solvents, the most famous that people use our water and alcohol as the most famous POLAR NONPOLAR compounds. And there is a study with bass steer University back in the day, which showed even just using a hot water extract, increase the effectiveness of you know, immune support in humans from, you know, they studied it with both Turkey Tail and reishi, just doing a hot water extract increased the immune support effectiveness by threefold, and sometimes up to four times the amount, just doing a hot water extract. But that's not even taking into account the alcohol extract, which is also really, really beneficial for functional mushroom extracts. And so unfortunately, some of the same companies that are making the mycelium on grain are also not even extracting it to make matters worse, so they're growing that mycelium on the grain, and then they're dehydrating it sometimes in a freeze dryer Other times, you know, with heat and hot air, and then using a hammer mill or something like that, to blend it up into a powder without even extracting it at all. And so it's unbelievably not bioavailable for the body, you're already starting with a fraction of the beneficial compounds. But then to make matters worse, they're just in trapped in these chitin walls, and they're not available to the human body. And why would they do that? Well, it's more expensive, more time consuming more amount of labor, more amount of ingredients. I mean, you know, alcohol can get expensive at a large scale. And then it's just cheaper to just do it that way and cut corners to talk, you know about how you can see at home, you know, and this doesn't always work I show you want to skip over this part because the visual really helps. So we partner with best year university, two years in a row. And we had a colleague there reishi Strauss, who was doing her final thesis there, and then helping another student do their final thesis. And so we replicated the study two years in a row and we got these amazing results. With the help of the students there at best your university and the lab there. Were studying, you know, the quarter sets that were growing at a farm, and the levels of quarters sipping and adenosine, the two main functional compounds and the comparison between the fruiting bodies and the mycelium, but also the best hot water extraction times and temperatures and also alcohol. And so we found that the researchers best year found that the fruiting bodies of cordyceps had up to 51.52 times more core to seep in, and 7.32 times more adenosine than the mycelium slash mycelium on grain. And so this was profound for us. And, you know, from a business perspective, you know, I was kind of hoping that the mycelium would have more beneficial compounds. You know, from a business owners perspective, you know, especially post COVID I'm always looking for ways to save money and mycelium is just a fraction of the cost for me. When I'm buying ingredients or even farming it myself. It's a fraction of the time fraction of the cost. I actually had financial incentive for Word mycelium to be more potent. And I'm actually doing myself a financial disservice from even releasing this podcast. And even you know, having this information out there, because using the fruiting bodies is so much more expensive for me, you know, I would love to use mycelium and save a ton of money. But ethically, I can't do that. I couldn't sleep at night, knowing that I'm putting out an inferior product that just has a fraction of the beneficial compounds. I couldn't sleep at night. You know, I come from my own health crisis. I want to help people. I want people to have the best revival and their own health. There was another study done that showed that fruiting bodies of kortesis militaris had higher levels of care to seep in. And pentostatin then actually wild specimens growing in the wild, and also pure mycelium, without any grain. And so you know, there's some people out there that say, Oh, well just take the grain out. So no fillers, but pure mycelium time and time again, we still see that it has significantly less of the main beneficial compounds. We also partnered with mega Zyme. And they developed a 1316 Beta Glucan testing protocol. And we sent in various samples from, you know, mushrooms that we grew in the farm to mushroom products that we pulled off the shelf. And we found that the actual cordyceps mushrooms themselves had up to 400 times more 1316 beta glucans then mycelium on grain of cordyceps militaris. There's other studies that show that the mushrooms have up to 13 times more amino acids than the mycelium on grain. So it's really night and day. And I do want to touch upon a couple other kind of tricky things that you might see out there are some marketing techniques, some companies out there will say, Oh, we have x amount of milligrams of polysaccharides in our products. Now polysaccharides are a very general term. And you know, 1316 beta glucans are a type of polysaccharide. But another polysaccharide is just starch. And rice contains 74% starch sorghum contains 64% oats have 58% starch. And so by displaying the amount of milligrams of polysaccharides in your product, you're potentially just saying how much starch fillers are in my product. And a more accurate way is saying how many 1316 beta glucans are in my product. Now, to make matters worse is that I've seen companies out there that have mycelium on grain as products and they say oh yeah, you're right. They've heard either me or somebody else talking about Yeah, don't say polysaccharides, say, the Beta Glucan analysis and they said, Okay, we'll say the Beta Glucan analysis. But beta glucan is also an umbrella term. And so like I said before, there's 1316, beta glucans, but there's also 1314, beta glucans. And so when 314 beta glucans are from cereal grains that are from plants, they don't support the immune system. And so a company can say, Yeah, we're packed with beta glucans, but they're really talking about the starchy beta glucans, the 1314, and not the 1316, which are fungal base, they support the immune system. There's over 6000 publications, investigating the immune supporting effects of 1316 beta glucans. So 1316, specifically, beta glucans are what you want to look for. Now, I'm gonna butcher this term, but I've seen other companies talk about this compound called a ribbon, nose Island, or ribbon. Nose Island, I think is how you pronounce it. And it's a dietary fiber structure found in oats, and they say, Yeah, we're packed with a ribbon, nose Island, you know, our products are packed because we use the mycelium and that's what's good, you know, a remote island is from oats, and there's very small amounts in it. And yeah, you know, you want some fiber in your diet, and that's great, but just eat oatmeal, orange eat, you know, fiber rich food. And instead of getting a trace amount and a capsule, from you know, the oats that they're using, just you know, eat a fiber rich diet and you're getting get 1000 times more revenues island from that at probably a fraction of the price as well. So let's talk about reishi. Now, there's studies that show that the reishi mushroom has up to 28 times more 1316 beta glucans compared to the mycelium and those triterpenes those famous triterpenes that I was talking about before the ganoderma ik acids. There was a study that showed that they studied a ton of different samples of both mushrooms and also mycelium little samples, they found that there were undetected ganoderma ik acids A through D, they could not detect any ganoderma ik acids A through D in the reishi mycelium, whereas their high amounts in the reishi fruiting body. Now that should be a complete red flag right there that the most famous compounds in reishi are not even detectable in the mycelium. And they have 28 times more 1316 beta glucans for immune support. There's, you know, I think it's 16 times were a gospel in the reishi Mushrooms compared to the mycelium. And there's also a scary study out there in partnership with the USP, who set standards for pharmaceuticals, food ingredients and dietary supplement ingredients. And they found that up to 70% of reishi products tested off the shelf, do not contain any reishi Mushrooms whatsoever. This scares the shit out of everyone. You know, there's just and this is true for a lot of things out there is not what they say on the label. And this is really scary. There's a lot of crap out there. And you know, you should be really wary of what you're buying. Because it could be not what's inside. I'll play the devil's advocate for a little bit because, you know, for me, I actually have a financial incentive for you know, mycelium to wite out and I do want it to but I'm also a scientist and a half to follow the science. And you know, this is what I found, you know, there are two compounds that are a bit higher in the mycelium and reishi compared to the fruiting body. The first would be GABA, I mean, it's a pretty famous compound. They found that there's about 63 milligrams per kilo in the reishi mushroom, whereas in the mycelium, there's about 114 milligrams per kilogram. The recommended daily dose is around 100 to 300 milligrams of GABA a day to help with mood. Now 114 milligrams per kilogram shows that you would need a kilo a pure reishi mycelium to get just the recommended daily dose of GABA now 100 You know 30 To 100 grams is about $35. So yeah, it doesn't seem financially worth it. And it just is such a low amount that it doesn't really make much sense. And it's not that much of a difference between the 64 and 114. Lova statin is another compound that is a bit higher in the mycelium compared to the fruiting bodies. But again, the recommended daily amount is significantly more than the trace amount that's present in both the reishi Mushrooms and the mycelium. And so it doesn't make financial sense, you need about 88 grams of reishi mushroom mycelium a day to get around the recommended daily amount. And that doesn't really make financial sense for people. And there's also up to 800 scientific studies that show that that high amount of Lovis that and can be potentially harmful for human health. And so really, it's kind of insignificant for both GABA and Lovis. That my talking, there are three main compounds that have very long tongue twisting names, and I'm not going to embarrass myself but they all start with the pH one of them phosphatidic acid. See, I'm going to embarrass myself. So there's three compounds that are in the fruiting body of my tacchi that are not in the mycelium, and they're all well studied for vital protein health for cell health and signaling. And they're extensively studied in the My Toki not in the mycelium. Now, my taki has much higher levels of trehalose that helps support nervous system health neuronal health help the aging nucleotides for healthy energy and cell function, nd fraction that really famous 1316 Beta Glucan and up to nine times more 1316 beta glucans for immune health Shirataki studies that show all essential amino acids protein glycogen lipids sorbic acid total ash content increased as fruiting bodies develop and increase as the fruiting bodies got more mature showing that the compounds are increased. As you know the primordia grows into the fruiting body and as the fruiting bodies actually grow and get more mature. There's up to four times more 1316 beta glucans compared to the mycelium and so again, you really want the mushroom now Chaga not technically a mushroom, it's a canker, a conch, but the sterile conch, there's basically all the beneficial compounds that are ever studied, where the mycelium it's non detectable. So for the Bachelor in the Bachelor linic acid Elon in the lupeol the Leno sterile that I know tow deal, the trim attendant travitt said no like acid, who made these long names oh my god, hopefully you're laughing with me and then probably eight other compounds that I'm just I'm not even going to keep embarrassing myself but 14 compounds that are extremely well studied that are in the chaga, sterile conch that are not present in the mycelium, and they showed that it has up to seven times more 1316 beta glucans in the chaga compared to the mycelium Wolfer PORIA Cocos the sclerotia again, it's not a mushroom but the sclerotia of the yam that I was telling you about has 91 triterpene acids or the mycelium only has 19 and of the 19 that they share. The sclerotia has up to six times higher in the sclerotia compared to the mycelium for lion's mane. Now this is one that people debate with me all the time. And there's one study out there that shows that you know Aaron a seen a is incredibly beneficial for nerve growth factor. Now that is true. Erin Eason A happens to be in the mycelium and not in the fruiting bodies. And so a lot of people say hey, you know you want the mycelium. However, there's 12345678. Other compounds in the fruiting body are well studied to help our classes of compounds that are in the fruiting body of Lion's Mane, tons of research showing it's incredibly supportive for nerve growth factor that are not in the mycelium, there are way more compounds, eight fold amount of compounds in the fruiting bodies compared to the mycelium that are beneficial for supporting nerve growth factor and cognitive function, memory etc. So in this prime example, it would only be beneficial to extract echinacea, a specifically and maybe put it into the fruiting body extract mix. I've looked into it, you know and that study, which shows Aaron a CNA, they're only able to get the amounts that were beneficial for human health by making it Aaron a seen a enriched by just using pure, you know, or just using random mycelial extracts, they weren't able to have it the compound and high enough amounts for it to actually do anything. So they needed to use genetic engineering and various methods to enrich and make that specific compound in higher amounts to actually make it do something. And also they were using pure mycelium in a bioreactor, whereas what you see on the market is mycelium on grain and 90% of it is diluted grain. And so really, you know, you're still better off using the fruiting bodies. And look, I've looked into it, I just want the best for people. I think this deserves more research. We were also unable to get that organic, you know, I looked into making an extract and isolating pure air and a CNA and just putting it in our extracts. But to do that, we would have to forego our organic certification, we'd have to use some nasty compound or nasty chemicals to extract it. And you know, it didn't seem ethical to be and it still doesn't if someone wants to do that, go for it. But you know, my stance is would still diluted if you were using you know if you combine the mycelium and the fruiting body, because you're diluting all the rest of the compounds, including the 1316 beta glucans, which there are up to 29 times more 1316 beta glucans in the fruiting body compared to the mycelium. So yeah, that's where it stands. Now moving forward a little bit. One of the coolest things that I saw when I took my last trip to China was this quarter SEPs company had all these different kinds of varieties of quarter setups, and they all look different. They're all different colors, different shapes, different thicknesses, and they all have different labels of Oh this one was grown on rice this one was grown on wheat this one tastes a bit sweeter and is better and tea. This one is higher levels of quarters sipping is and is better for an alcohol extract. This one has higher levels of zinc or iron or you know this and that and it was so cool to see all the different quote unquote strains of cordyceps for all these different things and it really reminded me of the cannabis industry if you go into a dispensary and you see you know double trouble and you know, Blue Dream and all these different strains of cannabis for all you know, this one's helps with creativity and this one is great for couch lock and this one will increase appetite and this one And you can still work, but it takes the edge off. And this one does that. And this one will make you trip balls. And you know, and like, it was cool to see that with mushrooms and not, you know, a reishi mushroom is an embracing mushroom and a cordyceps mushroom is an Incorta SEPs mushroom like this one is unique. And you know it has higher levels of this and therefore should be used in this way. And I hope that level of granularity, if that's the right word comes to the US and really transforms our functional mushroom market, as it did with the cannabis market. And you know, there just needs to be more education around functional mushrooms, there needs to be more research, more people talking about it. And one of the ways in which we as a company mushroom revival wanting to push the industry forward and create more conversations around the compounds present and lab testing was to create a QR code on the side of our bottles, and transparently display our lab results for the consumer. And we were the first functional mushroom company to do that in the world that I know of to have a QR code where people could scan it and see what's inside. And beyond functional mushrooms, I said this in a couple interviews, that I would love to see that with all products. Imagine going into the grocery store scanning like a carrot, and seeing you know, the farm and seeing the heavy metal and nutritional analysis and seeing, you know, the levels of I think it's beta carotene is the pigment in there and you know all these different cool things that you can and it's just like it's not a carrot anymore, you know, you can see deeper into the carrot. And you can maybe if there's two varieties there organic version and non organic, or this is from one farm, and that's from the other, you can scan the QR codes and see, okay, this has higher level nutritional components, and maybe this non organic version, I can see the levels of pesticides on there transparently. And maybe there's more heavy metals too, and maybe I'm not going to buy it because of that, I'm going to buy this one, or maybe Hey, they're about the same and nutritional component, but this one's $2 more expensive, I'm gonna go to the cheaper one. So I think it really gives power back to the people and really, you know, gives transparency that I think will shape the future. And that goes into just analytical fingerprinting, you know, they are developing this in China with specifically reishi to really push the industry forward on new cultivation techniques, and really set industry standards for what is appropriate levels of compounds for products and then to put different classes on it of like, this is like a mediocre level, or this is very potent, or this is you know, this is not so potent, and to have different grades, so to speak of like this is a grade, or B grade or C grade reishi and because it reaches this percentage of these different compounds, etc. Another thing that I would love to see more of his DNA analysis, and this is really important, you know, not only in the functional mushroom space, but also gourmet of like, knowing that that is the mushroom that you say it is. And so I've seen tons of people, you know, they'll pick ganoderma su gay in the Northeast sin, you know, Massachusetts, for example, then call it ganoderma lucidum and it's like, oh, no, wrong mushroom, you know, and then and then maybe take scientific studies all about ganoderma lucidum and say, yeah, it's same same, and then sell their ganoderma su gay with the link to papers from ganoderma lucidum and it's like, you can't really say that, or sell courses militaris with a picture of ovo cordyceps sign asons with studies linking over to cordyceps in essence, you know, I've seen people grow, you know, they use her ACIEM Americana instead of her Assam erinaceus and they'll still call it lion's mane or use a totally different type of Horus Ium I've seen a functional mushroom company use a presidium species that I've never even heard of, and then say all the benefits that link all the benefits that are linked to Arisia marriage asis, I've seen the same with Turkey Tail people using the harvest, you know, and they'll even put the pictures on their website of like a Styria most stria you know, Hamid Turkey Tail look like and they'll harvested in the woods and make a tincture and say, oh, yeah, tricky tail tincture for your immune support. And luckily, it's not poisonous, but it only takes one one mistake then the same with Chaga of using you know, burl of a tree or they'll use something that's not Chaga and they'll use that. So it's very interesting. Now another very controversial topic that I want to talk about and I brought this up in a couple different episodes, but I want to briefly touch upon it again because it's a really important concept. which is, there's a lot of xenophobia out there, around this, you know, any mushrooms from China. And really, the xenophobia isn't new, you know, it's been brainwashed in our society for hundreds of years. And it's really unfortunate, you know, for people, you know, from Asian descent living in the United States, or, you know, anywhere that has that xenophobia, who maybe are in the mushroom space, and yet a lot of hatred. And it's just very unfortunate to see that level of racism so wide out in the open and accepted. And I've seen conversations on extremely famous podcasts from extremely famous individuals and influential individuals in the space, saying things like, never buy mushrooms from China, they're all dirty, and they're all toxic, and saying these wild statements that blown me away, that those levels of conversations are continuing to be allowed, and acknowledged as correct. And I want to break it down that, you know, it doesn't matter, you know, potency, and quality doesn't matter. If you're talking about country of origin, I visited dozens, if not hundreds of mushroom farms all around the world. And no matter the country that I go to, in both China and the United States, or Canada, or whatever, there's terrible farms, I've been to very disgusting, dirty farms with the worst practices in the United States that I'm horrified. Like, they're actively making people sick, because their products are dirty, covered in E. coli, you know, written heavy metals, so bad, you know, no gloves, they're just covered in slime. I mean, I've seen mushroom farms that have a wild pig running around in the floor while they're packing in order, you know, and like, they just pet the pig. And then they go back to touching stuff. And it's like, yeah, not to shit on pigs too much. But like, you know, I've seen some wild stuff in the United States. And I've also seen some dirty farms in China. I've also seen pristine farms in China that blow away any farm that I've know of in the United States, and the level of cGMP compliance that they have, in some of the facilities that I've seen in China will blow away the facilities that I visited in the United States. And so there's a wide range wherever you visit. And, you know, to be honest, China has been working with mushrooms for a lot longer than we have here in the United States. And it's like, when you're buying coffee, you know, you're not going to throw a fit that it's from Colombia, or Honduras, or, you know, they know what they're doing. And that's where coffee grows, and they know how to grow amazing coffee, you wouldn't throw a fit. If your wine was coming from Italy, it's really looking at that brainwashing. And unfortunately, that the xenophobia of communism as a whole and the racism of of Asian people of you know, it creates this narrative and a lot of people's brains, intentional or not intentional at all, you know, some people have great intentions, but they just were brainwashed with that narrative, and that's fine. But I hope to shed the light. So people can, you know, look at those narratives that they've been, you know, consuming, and hopefully, you know, come out of it. And that's why, you know, I think it's important to have lab results on any product is that if you have a fear of heavy metals being in your product, for example, there should be lab results, transparent for people to see, are there heavy metals in that product, you know, and why certifications are so important. You know, if it's USDA certified organic, there are accrediting bodies, and there are, you know, people looking over your shoulder and crossing your T's and dotting your eyes, if a company doesn't have these certifications, then they can really do some dirty practices under the radar without somebody looking over their shoulder. If they're not cGMP compliant. The FDA is not looking over their shoulder to making sure they're compliant. And they're not legally bound to, you know, do these tests that check for heavy metals and biological contaminants. So really country of origin doesn't matter. And really, there's if you want to support local, that's another thing. And I really want to ask people, why do you want to support local? And I've heard some people say, well, it's more ecologically friendly. But I've seen a lot of quote unquote, local companies ship things from all over the world. And just because it's five minutes down the road, doesn't mean it's more ecologically friendly. And you could be five minutes down the road from Monsanto. Just because they're local doesn't mean they're more ecologically friendly. And so, you know, it's a controversial and very intricate concept that I want to talk about. And I also want to break it down of like when I started going deeper into this. So the definition of local, especially for food is 400 miles. To put it in perspective, that's the distance from a car driving from Los Angeles to San Francisco. There are mushroom farms that are maybe in San Francisco or Los Angeles, and they're in farmers markets all across, you know, California, and they may take that six hour drive every weekend to go to the farmers market. And that drive is about 382 miles from San Francisco to LA. Now the distance from Los Angeles to Maine, is about 3250 miles, the distance from Massachusetts to Portugal crossing the North Atlantic Ocean, is 3225 miles. So the distance between the United States to Portugal is smaller than the distance across the United States. And say, you're in Texas, and you have a client right across the border in Mexico, you know, or you're in, you know, upstate Washington, or you're in Maine and you want to sell to somebody right across the border in Canada, that's actually more local, even though it's international. Or if you're in Massachusetts, shipping something to Portugal, that's actually more, quote unquote, local or closer than main to Los Angeles. So you know, it's very interesting to talk about and as we're talking about, you know, interstellar space travel really puts it in perspective, like were the definition of local pretty soon is going to be like, is it made on planet Earth? Or is it made on Mars? Or is it made on the moon, we're going to have to ship our definitions pretty soon as we're getting more Interstellar. So how ethical is shipping overseas? You know, how ethical is shipping something from China to the United States, for example, you know, the distance from San Francisco to Shanghai is 9873 kilometers. Now, a Defra study concluded that a two ton that's 4000 pounds of freight carried over 10,000 kilometers, that's the distance between Shanghai and San Francisco, by a small shipping container, create 661 pounds of co2 E, which is a measure of relative global warming potential by playing that jumps 44x. So you know, shipping by small shipping containers is pretty good. Now, what is that, you know, 661 pounds of co2, is that a lot is that a small amount, so let's compare it to that drive from San Francisco to LA, if you drove, say, you are a mushroom farmer. And whatever, in LA, and you had a farmers market in San Francisco, you took that drive, you sold your mushrooms, it's still considered local, because it's in the 400 mile range. And then you drove back at the end of the day, that round trip, if you calculate from the average, admissions from an average US car would be 712 pounds of co2 per round trip, and compare it to 661 pounds of co2 from Shanghai to San Francisco. So it's actually believe it or not, this is crazy, less co2 emissions to take that freight of 4000 pounds of freight from Shanghai to San Francisco, then just taking a round local trip that blew my mind when I was looking at this data. And so it's not as crazy as one might think in terms of carbon emissions. Now, you know, how do you counteract these carbon emissions? So that round trip or you know, that freight across the ocean, from Shanghai to San Francisco, you would need to plant about 14 trees, and in one year, those 14 trees would counteract those co2 admissions. And there's a ton of companies out there that you can plant 14 trees for $14. And so 14 4000 pounds of cargo on a ship, for say, a company shipping all around the world. You know, that's the you can fit a lot in 14,000 pounds of cargo. And to counteract that it's only 14 trees in a year. Or if you plant one tree over 14 years, it will counteract those co2 emissions. It's not that much and so really li the carbon emissions from shipping international can be fixed pretty relatively easily, I think, where the carbon emissions really lie is not internationally shipping, they really lie in actually producing mushrooms. And this is not really what a lot of people want to hear. But this is the truth that each mushroom block, five pound mushroom block produces about 2.5 pounds of co2 per block. Now a medium sized or on this maybe smaller end mushroom farm produces about 4000 blocks per week. So that's about 10,000 pounds of co2 per week. And so you would need to plant about 10,000 trees per year, or sorry that so you would need to produce 10,000 trees a year, and to counteract those co2 emissions from your mushroom blocks. And so I hope more mushroom companies do that they plant trees, this is a big reason why us as a company, that we plant a tree for every product that we sell, and we planted over, you know, 50,000 trees around the world is because we know that in our production of growing mushrooms, and when we're shipping our orders, you know around the country and when we're buying materials from around the country and the world is that we are producing co2. And if we're going to be an environmentally ethical company, we need to counteract our admissions. So we buy carbon credits on top of planting trees to make sure that we're carbon neutral. If not carbon positive, or carbon negative, I can't remember the correct term, but that we're capturing more carbon that we're emitting. And other things to consider with growing mushrooms, there's a lot of single use plastic waste. And so this is kind of the benefit of you know, using techniques that have been developed for 1000s of years, ie in China is that they have these techniques that use sometimes not all the times, but some farms that they'll use a lot less plastic, and you know, out of all the industry from dairy to, you know, to architecture to oil to mining to you know, lumber etc. Mushroom farming is pretty low on the environmental burden list. But you know, we can still grow as an industry. And so most mushroom farming as a whole, especially with functional mushrooms, you know, they're grown in single use polypropylene number five bags, and kind of the skeleton of the closet and and a lot of mushroom Farms is that they have a huge dumpster out back with a ton of single use plastic bags that they just throw away, unfortunately. And so us is a cordyceps farm for mushroom revival we wanted to use, you know, reusable glass, Mason jars and we wanted to use, we use plastic bins, but we could reuse them over and over again. And there's farms out there that use bottle tech first developed in Japan. And they are fully automatic farms that use these plastic bottles that that you can reuse over and over again. Other farms, like you know, we have partnership farms that grow the mushrooms, specifically reishi off logs. And a lot of our mushrooms are grown off logs, including our PORIA Cocos, that and a lot of the mushrooms that we use. And they're either buried or you know grown in a shade house. And there's no or little plastic that needs to go into that process. And I think we can learn a lot in the US from systems from China and Japan, and other places around the world to where we can grow mushrooms a lot more sustainably. And companies wouldn't have to feel like they needed to cut corners, you know, we can grow a lot more mushrooms for a lot cheaper. And these companies wouldn't feel like they had to cut corners to save a quick buck. You know. And so I would love to see more fully automatic mushroom farms, I would love to see larger scale mushroom Farms, a lot of times more sustainability at scale. At scale, we can just grow a lot more for a lot less input. And I think, you know, we can get more mushrooms and more hands of people with less burden on the environment. We need better practices in this industry. We need more, you know, good laboratory practices, good agricultural practices, good manufacturing practices, production and clinical practices. And we need more companies following them. So we can have a standard set in the industry. So people feel safe, that they're getting good quality products. We just don't have the best. Unfortunately, you know, I go to an international functional mushroom conference every year. And you know, here in the states, like I think there's this common patriotism that we're like the best country in everything. But in terms of functional mushrooms. We kind of get like a bad Rep. And when I go to these international conferences, and they kind of laugh, like, we're kind of the New Kids on the Block, and we have a lot to learn, and that we're doing a lot of just like, bad practices that a lot of countries kind of laugh and they're like, Yeah, I got a long way to go. And so, you know, it's really funny to pop the bubble of that, like patriotism, like, you know, we're so good at everything we do. And then to just pop that bubble and say, Oh, actually, you know, we're not the vest, and we have a long way to go. And that's very humbling. And I think that helps people unwind, there's xenophobia, especially when it comes to mushrooms and mushroom industry is that, you know, we're the New Kids on the Block. And we have a lot to learn. And, you know, a lot of these countries that we're talking shit on, they actually school us, in mycology, we have a lot to learn from them. And so if we can humble ourselves to, you know, drop our egos enough to learn with an open mind, I think this industry can really propel in a huge way, I would love to see more extraction technologies beyond just hot water and alcohol. We have a lot to learn from the cannabis industry, but from a lot of different industries from all over the world. There's incredible research that I'm seeing in China and Europe and a lot of cool places that show all these innovative new extraction techniques to get the most potent extract. So kind of talking about the next steps and mushrooms in general, but also functional mushrooms. There's an estimated 5 million undescribed species of fungi out there. Out of the 5 million species, we've only described about 120,000. And out of those 120,000, only 14,000 of those actually produce mushrooms like the cap and stem mushrooms that we all know. So basically, it's the tip of the tip of the tip of the iceberg of what we'd know, on fungi and mushrooms, we have so much to learn out there. And that's really exciting. You know, we need more people out there finding new species of mushrooms, and potentially new species of functional mushrooms. There's the coupon Gary, and we had a whole podcast with them, which was totally mind blowing one of my favorite episodes, and they have fungal specimens collected from over 240 countries from all seven continents. And they are finding and preserving new species of fungi. The world fungi report is an annual report on fungi that comes out every year. And in 2017. I think it's every year, it could be bi annual or something like that. But in 2017, there was estimated 2200 new species of fungi that were were found. But the surprising thing was that only 4% were found in Africa, only 12% were found in South America. Whereas they have the Congo and the Amazon rainforest to the most biodiverse regions on the planet. And yet, collectively, that's only 16% of new fungal species, which really shows what this graph shows is that, you know, this is distribution of resources and distribution of scientists and mycologist. Actively studying this and having the resources and systems in place to go out and identify and find new species. And so this really shows is that there's a hell of a lot more fungi out there waiting to be discovered, and maybe a lot of them having functional benefits for human health and beyond. And that report only showed fungi that were found on land on terrestrial Earth, and didn't show fungi found in the oceans, which is over 75% of our Earth, you know, out of 326,000 natural products 30,000 come from marine life. There's over 1000 new compounds from marine fungi discovered every year, and 1988 compounds from various marine fungi were able to treat h one n one flu virus as well as being effective against HIV, herpes staph, various cancers. Even after the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, there was a reported mass increase of marine fungi able to potentially degrade oil. You know, this is huge. And we you know, we had an episode about marine fungi that completely blew me away. And that was like the first researcher that I've ever heard about setting marine fungi. And I'm a huge proponent of it, and I would love to see more people study marine fungi and really make it a bigger part of the conversation with mycology, we need more people like the cufon Gary, I'm actively working with researchers around the world to collect and preserve the species of fungi. But then once they're preserved and they're found, we need places like the Korean Marsh Um, culture collection in Korea, or the state key laboratory of mycology in China, or API in Canada, utilizing the top of the line, you know, research, technology to scan what compounds are present in these fungi? Like how are they useful to do clinical studies? To figure out? Are these newly discovered new to science species? Are they beneficial for human health? Can we use them for new Styrofoam packaging? Can we use them to degrade this plastic or this chemical? Can we use it, you know, to solve some of our biggest world problems? Now, a prime example for this is that, you know, there's this, I wish I could show these charts. But it basically shows a mass increase of specifically for cordyceps. With the rise of late age, molecular biology, there has been a huge increase of the new species that were able to be discovered with late age, molecular biology. And out of all the countries that have published new species of cordyceps, the United States is number two, and I've made this kind of class kind of focused on the United States, because that's where I'm recording from, but I know we have listeners from all around the world. And so maybe, you know, some of the xenophobia that I was talking about before, that is pretty rapid in the United States might not apply to you and your country. Maybe it does. And, you know, most of our listeners are from the United States. So I want to keep that in mind of, I'm keeping it kind of United States or North Americans centric. But this can apply to anybody, you know. So the second country that had the highest amount of new species of cortices found was United States. And to put that in perspective, because most of our listeners are from the United States is that there was a new species of cordyceps, found in China, in 2005, it was discovered cordyceps quando. In Kansas, in 2008. It was named for the first time the next two years, they figured out how to cultivate it. And all the while the next few years, they're doing compositional analysis, doing safety tests. Until us in 13, it was considered a novel food by the Chinese government and from 2009 to 2014. They're doing human clinical trials. And then from 2014. Through present, it's one of the most popular quarter sets of mushrooms in China for its functional benefits. And it's something that was just discovered and named not too long ago. And so it really shows that there could be some weird kortesis mushroom in your backyard that is just hoping to be discovered, that will, you know, in 10 years, might be one of the most famous species that we're using for functional benefits, and it could just be in your backyard. Another example of you know, because I'm a entomopathogenic fungi lover, is a serious and Claria fungi that grows on a cicada. And it's a weird looking fungi. And a compound in it called marry Osen is responsible for making a drug thing. Gollum odd, I think is how you pronounce it. And it's used for multiple sclerosis. And just in 2017, it brought in $2.5 billion in revenue, just from this weird fungus that grows on a cicada. And so really, you could just be walking in the woods, looking at this gross little bug and see this fungus on it, and it could be worth $2.5 billion annually. So really, like it's out there, you know, if we've only discovered 120,000 Out of the 5 million describe species of fungi, think of the possibilities out there. Now, there's a really cool company called Novo designs, and they're really focusing on fungal enzymes. And people really don't give as much credit to fungal enzymes being totally revolutionary for our world. And it's one thing that I you know, in addition to marine fungi that I just want more people to talk about, and also entomopathogenic fungi, but enzymes are crucial for next time you do laundry, know that there's probably fungal enzymes in your laundry detergent. Next time you put on a pair of jeans, know that fungal enzymes were responsible for making those jeans. Next time you write on a piece of paper or pick up a book, know that in the bleaching process of that paper that there's fungal enzymes used know that you know for next time you flush your toilet that there's fungal enzyme used in wastewater solutions. Know that next time you put on a leather jacket or you know some leather that there are fungal enzymes used to produce that leather and on and on and on. They are present in me next time you fill up your gas tank, they're fungal on Sometimes that helps make that ethanol. Any where you look, there's billion dollar industries that are affected by fungal enzymes. And they're more prevalent than you know. And so if we're going to go out there, and we're going to discover new species of fungi, and we're going to, you know, utilize them to solve some of the biggest world problems that we have, we got to conserve them. So that's the work of funghi Foundation, spearheaded by Juliana Ferrucci, out of Chile, we had her on her podcast, she's amazing. If you don't know who she is listened to that podcast, look her up. She's unbelievable. And honestly one of my biggest role models and idols in my life. She's a Wonder Woman. And I think everyone should know her and look up to her. I would love to see more education with fungi. You know, one of the coolest things in 2019 that I saw was there was a keynote lecture of someone talking about how they wanted better employees at their mushroom company. And they noticed that that their employees just didn't have a good education around mycology when they went to school. And so they found this great opportunity to build a school, from preschool to PhD. So they can train people from preschool, so they could have better employees in their company. And I thought that was hilarious. But also, you know, so inspiring to I would have loved to go to a preschool that taught me about mushrooms and kindergarten and middle school and elementary school. I mean, that would be so awesome. And we're seeing so many young people start to get into mushrooms and the fantastic fungi just launched the fantastic fungi education curriculum in the United States. And I think they're spreading it all over the world as well, to help instill mushroom curriculums into young kids education programs, which is super cool. And I want more of it. There's new books coming out like untangled life by Merlin Sheldrick, one of my favorite episodes that we've had, we need more people writing books, I, you know, took it's been a long time since I've written a book. It's been five years and I'm now writing my book. As I said, In the beginning, it should be really soon. I'm very excited about it. Anyone can pick it up. It's just it's very, it'll have a really cool pictures in it. And it's very, you know, for beginners and experts alike, it should be a really fun book. You know, we have documentaries coming out like fantastic fungi. We have museums. You know, when I was in China, I found three mushroom museums within a two hour radius, I accidentally walked into a reishi Museum, asking for directions and I look up and it's like reishi Museum, I'm like, This is the craziest thing ever. So I'd love to see more museums all around the world. No matter where you're tuning in from, you know, if you have any experience curating a museum or opening up one, if you have a ton of money that you're looking to spend and you don't know what to do with it, and you'd love mushrooms, open a mushroom Museum, I'm sure it'll be a big hit and people will be be really into it. There's researchers making fungal batteries, working on new pesticides, new myco materials, from, you know, Michael leather to myco meats. I mean, there's so many amazing things that I can go on and on about of the incredible benefits of fungi in our world, beyond functional mushrooms for human health, that we just need more people hyped about mushrooms. And so this is really a message for everybody, to I know, I give the same message at the end of every podcast, but I really mean it. We need more people to get hyped about this and really passionate and this is what's really going to spread our connection and this goes beyond mushrooms. It's really like a revival of getting people connected to the natural world again, you know, we as a human species, we've gotten disconnected from our roots. And I think that's the core of dis ease and disharmony in ourselves. And you know, I would love to see more people get connected with the natural world and mushrooms. There's just such a good portal for that. And so tell your friends, tell your family, share the podcast, share our products with people you know, have fun conversations say a fun fun go fact to some random person on the street that you just met at the dog park at the grocery store. Get people excited about mushrooms and be a good person. And with that if you love the show that goes a long way of just, you know spreading the word about our podcast spreading the word about our products and recite at mushroom We have tinctures we have capsules we have powders we have gummies all made from the fruiting body all double extracted, all with a QR code that showed the lab results all USDA certified organic cGMP compliant, non GMO, gluten free Egon, all the good stuff, we tried to make it as potent as possible for, you know, the best bang for your buck and make it affordable for people, we plant a tree for every product we sell, we're super excited about it. You can use the code pod treat pod t r e 84, for a undisclosed discount, you got to plug it in to figure out how much you're going to save, we actually change that coupon code percentage all the time. So who knows what you're going to get this time. And so that's a good way if you want to share it with your family if you want to find that support for yourself. Whether you're looking to support your energy, cognitive function, sense of calm, immune support, adapt to occasional stress, whatever it may be, could be a cool thing to weave in your life. We also have a bunch of educational blogs on there, links to podcasts. And yeah, we have a ton of exciting episodes coming up and I swear for the future episodes, I will not talk this long. This has been a request for actually a really long time that I do a full episode on functional mushrooms one on one where I dive deep for I don't know how long I've been recording this right now. Two and a half hours. Holy shit, very long episode. Hopefully people enjoy it. They get a lot of benefit from it. I'm gonna stop talking and rest my voice and you could rest your years. Much love so much love wherever you're tuning in from, and may the spores be With You Transcribed by

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