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Food Safety Focus (116th Issue, March 2016) – Food Incident Highlight

Be Cautious When Buying Wild Mushrooms

In the last two months, several persons were reported ill after eating dried wild porcini (also called boletoid) mushrooms that they had bought from different retail outlets. It was suspected that edible mushrooms had been unintentionally mixed with poisonous mushrooms. The Centre for Food Safety has alerted the public about the incidents and requested relevant importers and vendors to stop sale and recall the affected products.

Some edible wild mushrooms are very similar in appearance to poisonous varieties and may grow in the same habitat. Thus, wild mushrooms are usually inspected by mushroom identification experts before they are sold. Still, food poisoning cases, both local and overseas, related to adulterated wild mushrooms happen from time to time. The public should be aware of the risk in consuming wild mushrooms. Furthermore, the public should not pick wild mushrooms for consumption. The trade should make sure that the mushrooms they sell are fit for human consumption.