It's not a fungus farm but a mountain of mushrooms - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

It's not a fungus farm but a mountain of mushrooms

LAUPAHOEHOE (HawaiiNewsNow) - This week, all eyes turn to the Big Island for the 49th annual Merrie Monarch festival. The competition portion kicks off at the end of the week in Hilo.

As we wait for that, Hawaii News Now headed up the Hamakua coast -- to find some other stories in Hawaii county. And we found one - with fungus all over it.

With the world's best hula just days away, employees at Hamakua Mushrooms are watching a different kind of dance develop. Nature turns a mixture of raw materials into thriving mushrooms - with a little help from a specialized growing technique.

"Everybody expected to come into a dark cave and the mushrooms are growing on the ground here," says Hamakua Mushrooms President, Bob Stanga. "But our specialty mushrooms all require natural light, so I think that's a big surprise to most people."

You won't find common button mushrooms here. The Hawaii owned-and-operated farm raises wood-decomposing, specialty mushrooms and uses an automated Japanese bottle cultivation method to spur their growth.

When you see something like white, cottony fuzz around your mushroom, don't be alarmed. It's actually a sign that the mushroom is healthy and full of vigor, and you shouldn't throw it away.

Harvester Daniel DeRego says it's amazing to dine at a restaurant and taste the finished product. "It feels good. Because you know all your hard work wasn't for nothing," he says.

The farm grows up to six different species of mushrooms and is working on different strains found only in Hawaii. "That's how we kind of want to separate ourselves from other farms on the mainland - is by growing choice edible Hawaiian mushrooms, as well."

They hope to capitalize on the "buy local" trend and show that, on the Big Island, opportunities abound - whether it's cultivating the sway of a hula - or the swath of a mushroom farm.

Copyright 2012 Hawaii News Now. All rights reserved.

  • Hawaii News Now headlinesNewsMore>>

  • Shame, fear: Survivors explain not reporting sexual assaults

    Shame, fear: Survivors explain not reporting sexual assaults

    Friday, September 21 2018 6:20 PM EDT2018-09-21 22:20:29 GMT
    Saturday, September 22 2018 2:12 AM EDT2018-09-22 06:12:29 GMT
    (AP Photo/Alex Brandon, File). FILE - In this Sept. 6, 2018 file photo, President Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee, Brett Kavanaugh testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington for the third day of his confirmation ...(AP Photo/Alex Brandon, File). FILE - In this Sept. 6, 2018 file photo, President Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee, Brett Kavanaugh testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington for the third day of his confirmation ...
    Survivors respond with fury to Trump's remarks on woman who accused court nominee of sexual assault.More >>
    Survivors respond with fury to Trump's remarks on woman who accused court nominee of sexual assault.More >>
  • AP sources: Rosenstein spoke of possible secret Trump taping

    AP sources: Rosenstein spoke of possible secret Trump taping

    Friday, September 21 2018 2:40 PM EDT2018-09-21 18:40:49 GMT
    Saturday, September 22 2018 2:02 AM EDT2018-09-22 06:02:46 GMT
    (AP Photo/Evan Vucci, File). FILE - In this July 13, 2018, file photo, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein speaks during a news conference at the Department of Justice in Washington. Rosenstein is denying a report in The New York Times that he sugge...(AP Photo/Evan Vucci, File). FILE - In this July 13, 2018, file photo, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein speaks during a news conference at the Department of Justice in Washington. Rosenstein is denying a report in The New York Times that he sugge...
    Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein is denying a report in The New York Times that says he suggested last year that he secretly record President Donald Trump in the White House to expose the chaos in the...More >>
    Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein is denying a report in The New York Times that says he suggested last year that he secretly record President Donald Trump in the White House to expose the chaos in the administration.More >>
  • GOP, Kavanaugh accuser in standoff over her Senate testimony

    GOP, Kavanaugh accuser in standoff over her Senate testimony

    Friday, September 21 2018 1:50 AM EDT2018-09-21 05:50:12 GMT
    Saturday, September 22 2018 1:52 AM EDT2018-09-22 05:52:29 GMT
    (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite). Protesters opposed to President Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee, Brett Kavanaugh, occupy the office of Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, in the Hart Building on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursda...(AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite). Protesters opposed to President Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee, Brett Kavanaugh, occupy the office of Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, in the Hart Building on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursda...

    A lawyer for Christine Blasey Ford says she'd testify next week to the Senate Judiciary Committee about Brett Kavanaugh if conditions can be agreed to.

    More >>

    A lawyer for Christine Blasey Ford says she'd testify next week to the Senate Judiciary Committee about Brett Kavanaugh if conditions can be agreed to.

    More >>
Powered by Frankly