A mushroom revolution is taking place on the grocery store shelves of Southern California: In the produce sections of markets across Los Angeles, Agaricus bisporus, commonly known as the white button mushroom, is giving way to other fungi species such as blue oyster, lion’s mane, maitake and royal trumpet.
Many of them likely are cultivated in a sprawling warehouse in the middle of Vernon — the industrial city just south of downtown L.A. — the location of an urban mushroom farm that New York-based company Smallhold opened five months ago.
In a 34,000-square-foot building, on the same street as a producer of ready-mix concrete and a Dr Pepper distributor, Smallhold grows mushrooms of fantastical display and scale — several thousand pounds of mushrooms a week, or tens of thousands of pounds in the near future, if all goes as planned.
“We have the capacity to harvest more than 20,000 pounds a week,” said co-founder and Chief Executive Andrew Carter. “Our goal is to feed 2 million people in the U.S. with mushrooms by the end of 2022. We’re very much on track.”
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