Big in Japan (3)

  • From the 18th to the 27th of June, 2010 the Hessische Landesfachgruppe Pilzanbau organised a studytrip to Japan. A group of Europeans from five different countries set out to discover the 'exotic' mushroom industry on central and northern Honshu and the north island, Hokkaido. A very fascinating trip it was. In Mushroom Business 41, 42 and 43 we ran a series of three big articles on this trip, written by publisher Roel Dreve, who was one of the happy few. The pictures in this series on the website refer to the last part of the trip (and the last article), from Sapporo to Tokyo.

    Publisher Roel Dreve at Chuo Dori, Ginza district, in the heart of Tokyo.
    Tokyo as seen from Tokyo Tower (333 metres high). On bright days, you can see Fujiama from here.
    Behind the thunder gate, with a giant lantern, lies a busy street lined with little shops.
    At the beautiful Sensoji Buddhist temple complex in Tokyo on the last day of our visit to Japan.
    The whole HLP group in front of the Yoshimoto farm. The owner and his wife are holding the welcome plate.
    Produce by Yoshimoto farm.
    Mr Sugasawara reading the latest issue of Mushroom Business.
    Basic materials used at the farm, come from far away as well. Here we see BVB Euroveen casing soil in 50 ltr bags from The Netherlands. Supplement comes from IPP (UK) and compost from Walkro and Coenegrachts also from the Low Countries.
    Pickers at work at Yoshimoto farm.
    White button mushrooms, still a rather unique sight in Japan. Only 5000 tons are grown each year of which 1300 tons are produced by Yoshimoto farm.
    Kazuhisa Takahashi, director of Waq Trading Inc., shows the typical scissors that are used for harvesting (instead of knives). Waq is the only Japanese trader in Agaricus bisporus. Behind Takahashi we see Mr Sugasawara, owner of the farm.
    The farm produces chestnut and white button mushrooms, Amycel varieties. Magnum, Delta and Bella are cultivated, and the Heirloom is tested right now.
    The modern Agaricus operations of Yoshimoto are built with many Dutch influences. Geraedts Construction first and foremost, but there's also Dofra, Elektro Limburg, Fancom, Hoving Holland.
    The HLP group enjoying their lunch boxes at Yoshimoto farm. Front left we see Johan Ramon and Bert Rademakers. Front right Jan Koopmans and J
    The maize left over after the whisky distilling process (in these buildings) is used as a nutrient medium for Nameko growing.
The HLP group tested the main product though!
    The Miyagikyo distillery of Nikka Whisky is located in stunning verdant landscape. Nikka is the premier Japanese whisky brand.
    In the forest behind the laboratory, we found thousands of shiitake logs; a pretty sight.
    And Pleurotus Erengyii.
    Nameko research at Kinokkusu.
    Colorful mixing materials at the spawn laboratory of Kinokkusu.
    Inside the spawn laboratory.
    Behind the spawn laboratory of Kinokkusu Corporation are some sheds where shiitake is cultivated on logs. They are grown here for sale, not for research.
    Kinokkusu products.
    Autoclave at Kinokkusu.
    At Kinokkusu, coarse and fine types of beech meal are sieved and mixed. The factory houses large (for popular varieties as shiitake and nameko) and small mixers.
    Beech sawdust is considered the best raw material for Nameko.
    Mr Ken-Ichi Kooriyama, director of spawn producer Kinokkusu Corporation and chairman of the Japanese spawn producers.
    Flight to Sendai on Honshu.
    Sapporo on Hokkaido, a very nice and bustling city.
  • Upcoming events

  • Newsletter subscription