Stop consuming porcini mushrooms suspected to contain mixture of species including inedible or poisonous mushrooms

Issue Date 30.1.2018
Source of Information

Centre for Food Safety (CFS)

Food Product

Loose-pack porcini mushrooms

Product Name and Description

Loose-pack porcini mushrooms sold at number 3R15 at the Hong Kong Food Festival and 2B-1011 at the 52nd Hong Kong Brands and Products Expo

Reason For Issuing Alert
  • The CFS is following up on two food poisoning cases suspected to have been caused by consuming porcini mushrooms, which were referred earlier by the Centre for Health Protection of the Department of Health.
  • Investigations showed that the patients concerned had separately purchased the porcini mushrooms concerned from the above-mentioned booths. The mushrooms concerned were suspected to contain mixture of edible species as well as inedible/poisonous species.
  • Mushroom poisoning is generally acute and manifested by a variety of symptoms, depending on the species and amount consumed. The incubation period is usually short. Gastrointestinal symptoms such as nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain are the commonest symptoms. Sometimes distinguishing features such as extreme thirst, profuse sweating, hallucination, coma and other neurological symptoms may occur.
Action Taken by the Centre for Food Safety
  • The CFS appealed to members of the public who had purchased porcini mushrooms from the above-mentioned booths at the exhibitions held from December 2017 to early January 2018 not to consume them.
  • The CFS will continue to follow up and take necessary action to safeguard food safety and public health. Investigation is ongoing.
Advice to the Trade
  • Stop using or selling the product concerned if possessing it.
Advice to Consumers
  • Do not consume the product concerned if bought it.
  • When buying and eating fresh mushrooms:
    • Do not buy mushroom products which are doubted to have carried mixing of unknown species;
    • Do not buy mushrooms which look unhygienic (with growing substrates left with the product) or show signs of spoilage (with coloured spots/abnormal smell/slime, etc);
    • Wash and cook mushrooms thoroughly before consumption; and
    • Seek medical treatment immediately if mushroom poisoning is suspected.
Further Information

The CFS press release

Centre for Food Safety
Food and Environmental Hygiene Department