Which genus is most widely eaten worldwide?

Moselio Schaechter mschaech at sunstroke.sdsu.edu
Mon Nov 27 18:42:28 EST 2000

Daniel Wheeler,

Nice to correspond with you.  On the mutual admiration soc., let me praise
your fine work for myconet, both in and out of truffling.  You are one of
the stalwarts that keep this going.

I understand being amanitophobic, but let me point out that this may be a
bit eurocentric, if that's the word.   When I asked David Arora, as well
travelled a mycologist as any,  which GENUS of wild mushrooms he reckoned
is  eaten by the largest number of ethnic groups in the world, his answer
was, guess what, Amanita.  Of course, he didn't mean by weight.  What would
you have guessed?

It turns out that amanitas are greatly esteemed among mushroom gatherers in
Africa and Southeast Asia.   And, of course, this is one of the reasons why
people from Laos, among others, could get into  trouble in the U.S., eating
what they considered to be prized species.

Good luck with your mystery mushroom.

Elio Schaechter

Author, "In the Company of Mushrooms"
Harvard University Press

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