It is never too late to become conscious of health and to contribute to its betterment!
I did not enquire about his age but Shizuo Nanjyo is definitely my elder but he has never lost his enthusiasm and belief when it comes to insure a healthy product of the highest quality.
A second-generation tea grower for 58 years but a first-generation shiitake mushroom grower for 50 years he decided to get away from the beaten tracks this year and assume not only the cultivation but also the marketing of his shiitake mushrooms.
Logs to be used for shiitake cultivation.
I finally managed to pay him a visit thanks to my good friend Asami Ito who kindly drove me all the way up the Abe River in Shizuoka City into the middle of wasabi and green tea land (mountains) in Do District.
Mr. Nanjyo grows his shiitake in a large greenhouse in a very clean environment without the use of any agrochemicals to ensure the heath and safety of his products.
As a further proof of his attention to health he had the government survey his crop and give him a certificate stating that his mushrooms are radioactivity free!
Insects and pests are taken care of with sticking tape traps (can you see the yellow pieces overhead?)
The wood logs come from kunugi/椚/Sawtooth Oaks (90%) and nara/楢/Japanese Oak from neighbouring Yamanashi Prefecture.
Logs are first inoculated with shiitake mushroom mycelium (also from Yamanashi Prefecture).
The logs are then soaked into clean water to help the mycelium to spread inside the log.
When the first tiny mushrooms start appearing the logs are then stacked and stored outside for 6 months.
They are protected from the sun, rain and big temperature gaps with reeds imported all the way from lake Biwa!
What about that for ecology!
Vinyl sheets are ineffective as they don’t allow air drafts and actually negatively help the temperature to rise under them.
This type and method of cultivation is only a return to traditional farming after all!
Logs are used for 4 years and then will be sent to specialized companies who will turn them into compost or sawdust for effective recycling.
When the logs are ready for fructification Shizuo will then move them inside the greenhouse kept at a regular temperature of around 25 degrees between October and May. Each log will be dated to know exactly when the mushrooms will be ready for harvest.
After that it is a question of timing as some customers want their mushrooms small,…
Shizuo kindly offered me to choose mine from those beauties as a souvenir!
Actually, I was still very busy talking with the kind producer about farming in general and Asami kindly picked some (plenty!) for me (in her left hand!), but Shizuo would not let me go without accepting an even bigger bunch of them (in Asami’s right hand!)!
Not only that, but I also ended up with two succulent daikon and a truly enormous cabbage from their personal garden!
Their garden is very popular as they have to protect it with a double netting to fend off monkeys, wild boars and deer which regularly pay an unwelcome visit to farms in the mountains!
It was only natural to put all these beautiful super fresh mushrooms to good use and bring plenty of them to Yasaitei Izakaya to be served and introduced to customers!
There is no better way to advertise great produce than having them served at once to happy gastronomes by knowledgeable chefs!
Shizuo Nanjyo, Shiitake Grower
Shizuoka Shi, Aoi Ku, Do, 504-2
Individual orders welcome
Mr. Nanjyo’s shiitake mushrooms will also be on sale every Sunday from 9:30 to 12:30 from December 11th at the car park of Marufuku Tea Company, Shizuoka Shi, Aoi Ku, Wakamatsu, 112.
Fpr more details call Ms. Asami Ito: 0120-36-4188
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