Mycofarm | Mushrooms


Mycofarm™ is the business and passion of two immigrant families who settled in the Lismore- Byron hinterland over 100 years ago and have brought with them European and Asian knowledge and traditions in mushroom selecting, growing and extracting.

Over the years, in association with local Aboriginee’s local varieties of fungi unique to the Northern Rivers of NSW and South East Qld have been identified and their unique properties realised and specimens selected and propagated.

In the aftermath of WWII and the Korean War, John Peek our Production Manager grew up foraging in forests of the Korean peninsula for mushrooms as being the only ‘meat’ procurable. Meanwhile, our Australian partners at the same time grew up on mushrooms and rabbit stew.

Until recent years the business involved producing fresh mushrooms for wholesalers in Brisbane and local Asian restaurants on the Gold Coast and Northern Rivers of NSW. Since 2000 the Western diet of Australians has expanded to embrace and include a variety of gourmet mushrooms and extracts which the business has for years been supplying and seeking to expand.

The past decade has seen genuine consumer interest in the production and supply of a variety of mushrooms and extracts at which the business excels at producing.

The biggest threat to the mushroom industry today is the lack of authenticity by some marketing companies with slick names jumping on the mushroom band wagon and sourcing extracts and products from questionable sources around the world and pushing these to an unsuspecting public as being ‘Australian’.

The science of mycology is complicated, intricate and requires a deep and thorough knowledge of fungi, its sources and cultivation. Supply of the wrong mushroom like any foodstuff can cause death or severe sickness.

At Mycofarm™ mushroom growing and harvest are our passion. All team members are thoroughly trained to know their product and observe established protocols and procedures to ensure traceability for all products supplied.

The pandemic of 2020-21 was an excellent time for R & D and in February 2022 when ready to launch a new range of mushrooms and extracts, the greenhouses and production facilities in Lismore, Mullumbimby and Tweed Heads were decimated by the worst flooding in 150 years.

Ironically though the cattle owned by the business and acres of crops were destroyed, within 14 days the mouldy hay bales were covered with a proliferation of fungi and varieties of mushrooms not seen before. As a result, the company welcomed the opportunity to rebuild its cultivation facilities and embrace the latest in Swiss mushroom technology (see in each of its three locations.

Today Mycofarm™ has three farms on the Northern Rivers all producing an array of specialised mushroom varieties. Farms are located on the Richmond River at LISMORE (South Gundurimba), on the Brunswick River at BYRON, (Mullumbimby) and the Tweed River at TWEED HEADS.

In specially adapted green houses at each location mushrooms are produced ready for sale at local farmers markets and supply to selected gourmet providores and restaurants.

The company continues to wild harvest certain varieties including truffles inoculated years ago under its own forests including truffles, noting that pickers are at the mercy of the elements. Similarly outdoor greenhouses require crews of labourers to turn compost with shovels and moulded ridge beds, adding spawn covering it with soil straw and heshian bags, then uncovering the mushrooms when they are ready to be picked, graded and packaged.

The newly constructed IVF (Internal Vertical Farm) is however the future for most of the commercial mushroom crop as well as the future of food production with ‘Precision Fermentation’ which the business is actively pursuing as part of commercialising its long-term R & D activities.

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