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Issue Number: Council I 006


Report-Wild Harvested Mushroom Committee

Issue you would like the Conference to consider

During the 2010 Conference for Food Protection Biennial Meeting in Providence, Rhode Island the Wild Harvested Mushroom committee was created and given the following charges as an outcome of Issue 2010 I-008:

The Conference recommends that the Council consider forming a committee to continue discussion of this issue and that the following language and attachments for consideration to be placed on the CFP website as guidance listing steps that states can use to develop and implement a wild harvested mushroom program for their state. The charges will be:

(1) Develop guidelines to help regulators address the issue of wild mushrooms in food establishments;

(2) Report back at the 2012 CFP;

(3) The name of the committee will be Wild Harvested Mushrooms Committee.

This Issue presents the Wild Harvested Mushrooms Committee's final report along with committee roster and requests acknowledgement of the attached report.

The Wild Harvested Mushrooms Committee worked to complete their charges by developing a model program that regulatory agencies can use when addressing the issue of wild harvested mushrooms in retail and food service establishments.

Public Health Significance

Due to public health food safety concerns, regulatory agencies in many jurisdictions follow the lead of the US FDA model Food Code (hereafter model Food Code) in requiring that wild harvested mushrooms sold to the public be identified by "an approved mushroom identification expert" (2009 model Food Code, Section 3-201.16). However, the pathway both for becoming an "approved mushroom identification expert" and having a regulatory agency recognize one are not well established or defined. The model Food Code recommends that all food served to the public must come from safe sources. The model Food Code further stipulates that mushrooms species picked in the wild shall be obtained from sources where each mushroom is individually inspected and found to be safe by an approved mushroom identification expert. However the model Food Code does not establish what constitutes the basis for approval of an identification expert. Due to the lack of established criteria and recognized training courses, some regulatory jurisdictions entirely prohibit the sale of wild harvested mushrooms. Other states have a limited program to allow specific species to be sold. The model program proposed here addresses this "gap" in public health interventions by providing clear guidance for regulatory agencies to use when addressing the issue of wild harvested mushrooms in foodservice establishments.

Recommended Solution: The Conference recommends...

acknowledgement of the Wild Harvested Mushrooms Committee's final report and recognize the effort that committee members put forth in completion of the charges issued by the 2010 biennial meeting.


Submitter Information

Name Chris Gordon, Co-Chair
Organization Wild Harvested Mushroom Committee
Address Virginia Department of Health 109 Governor Street
5th Floor-Office of Environmental Health Services
Richmond, VA 23219
Telephone 804-864-7417
Fax 804-864-7475
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