Mushroom Poisoning - Mushroom Picking - Tips For Mushroom Picking

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Mushroom Poisoning - Mushroom Picking - Tips For Mushroom Picking
Mushroom Poisoning - Mushroom Picking - Tips For Mushroom Picking
Video: Mushroom Poisoning - Mushroom Picking - Tips For Mushroom Picking
Video: JENKEM - Hunting for Mushrooms with Ryan Reyes 2023, February

Prevent mushroom poisoning

Mushrooms grow in forests, on meadows, in the meadows and in parks. The palette of edible wild and forest mushrooms that nature brings out, especially in autumn, is wide. But not every beautiful specimen is suitable for consumption and not all edible mushrooms have to look appetizing or edible. So there are no generally applicable rules for determining the edibility that apply to all mushrooms. Likewise, smell and taste do not give a clear indication of palatability. If you want to go hunting for mushrooms yourself, you need a thorough knowledge of mushrooms and should know where and when you can identify the mushrooms you have collected if anything is unclear. It is not possible for experts to determine the fungus on the weekend.


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  • more on the subject
  • Advice, downloads & tools
  • Tips for collecting, transporting and storing mushrooms
  • Enjoy mushrooms safely
  • What to do in case of mushroom poisoning

There are over 3,000 species of mushrooms in Central Europe. Some mushrooms are real delicacies, others are inedible for humans and some are even poisonous. Numerous types of mushrooms can be mistaken for poisonous doppelgangers. For example, the green edible pigeon can be confused with the deadly poisonous green cap mushroom or the Kaiserling with the fly agaric.

Consumption of poisonous mushrooms can sometimes be life-threatening. Severe poisoning can cause serious damage to the liver and kidneys such as kidney failure and hepatic coma. In case of doubt, the following should always apply: stay away from it or have it assessed by an expert before consumption!

Tips for collecting, transporting and storing mushrooms

  • Only those mushrooms should be collected that can be reliably identified.
  • Old, moldy, soaked or frozen mushrooms must not be picked. The same applies to older mushrooms that are dark in color, sensitive to pressure, or slimy.
  • Small, too young mushrooms that are easy to confuse should not be used.
  • Only quantities of mushrooms should be picked that can be eaten soon after picking.
  • Traces of eating on mushrooms are by no means a distinguishing feature of the edibility. Because snails, maggots and game also eat mushrooms that are dangerous to humans.
  • Toadstools don't always have to taste bitter, hot, or smell unpleasant. For example, the poisonous death cap mushroom can smell sweet, clover-like and can also be eaten by snails.
  • If a fungus has been reliably identified, dirt and unusable parts should be removed immediately on site (e.g. in the forest).
  • Mushrooms are best transported and stored in a basket. Plastic bags are not suitable for storage as the mushrooms begin to stew or “sweat” and spoil within a short time. In addition, mushrooms are not suitable for longer fresh storage.
  • If you want to determine a fungus or have it determined, you should always unscrew it with stump and stem. The mushroom should not be cut off. An exception are mushrooms that grow on wood. These may be cut off at the base. For a reliable determination it is ideal to take several mushrooms with you in different growth stages.
  • According to the Forest Act and the Fungus Protection Ordinance, up to two kilograms of mushrooms can be collected per day in Vienna for personal use. The amount allowed may vary from state to state. There is a general ban on collecting in the Lainzer Tiergarten nature reserve and the Donau-Auen national park area.

Enjoy mushrooms safely

  • Prepare mushrooms as soon as possible after picking.
  • Mushrooms should not be consumed raw, as only a few mushrooms in their unprocessed state are safe for humans. Some mushrooms that are edible when cooked are even poisonous raw (e.g. Hallimasch).
  • Mushrooms are hard to digest. Therefore, you shouldn't eat too many mushrooms at once. The more they are crushed, the more digestible they become. Mushroom dishes are not suitable for reheating several times.
  • Beware of alcohol: Some mushrooms can become poisonous in combination with alcohol (e.g. the wrinkle ink).
  • Before freezing, mushrooms should be carefully cleaned, cut up ready to cook and possibly blanched. Freezing must take place very quickly at the lowest possible temperatures.
  • Mushrooms can be dried in the air or in the oven, which extends their shelf life. Dried mushrooms should be stored in a well-sealable container.

What to do in case of mushroom poisoning

  • Fungal poisoning can manifest itself quickly (within three hours), for example through symptoms such as vomiting and / or diarrhea. Symptoms (e.g. diarrhea or bloating of the stomach) may not appear until six to 24 hours after consumption.
  • If you suspect mushroom poisoning, call the poison information center immediately on +43 1 406 43 43 (staffed around the clock for emergencies).

Note If you have symptoms such as vomiting, diarrhea, dizziness, sweating, impaired consciousness and intoxication within 24 hours after the mushroom meal, you should go to a hospital early, dial the emergency number 144 directly or call the Poisoning Information Center (VIZ) on +43 1 406 43 43 (for Manned around the clock in emergencies)!

The experts at the Austria-wide mushroom advice centers examine the mushrooms you have collected:

  • List of mushroom counseling centers in Austria (Austrian Mycological Society)
  • Food supervision in magistrates and district authorities (Ö

You can find out more at:

  • Poisoning: mushrooms (emergency poisoning)
  • Poisoning: plants (emergency poisoning)
  • Information on the nutritional and health value of mushrooms (seasonal calendar)
  • Recipes with Mushrooms (Healthy Recipes)

Informative links on the topic:

  • Mushroom database for queries (for interested laypeople, Austrian Mycological Society)
  • Is mushroom picking allowed in the forest? (Federal Ministry for Agriculture, Regions and Tourism)
  • Mushrooms - information, advice and assessment (Vienna Market Office / mushroom advice)
  • Edible mushrooms and other edible mushrooms (Wiener Marktamt / mushroom advice)
  • Poison mushrooms (Vienna Market Office / mushroom advice)
  • Inedible and worthless mushrooms (Vienna Market Office / mushroom advice)

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