As he grows his mushroom farm, Jeremy Herdrich wants to have an impact on his community and "change the paradigm of what farming should be." "It's not this mystical knowledge that's passed down, really it should be openly shared and freely with everybody," Herdrich said in his second year operating Frozen Cap Mushroom Farm in Rochester.

He said growing mushrooms is easy enough that he believes anyone can grow them. It comes easily for him to educate people on mushrooms, such as the white button mushrooms pulled from grocery store shelves sharing the "same family" as a portobello mushroom. Or the fluffy feel of different varieties of mushrooms and the smells like roses and the ocean. From his farm to local community cooperatives, families' tables, and restaurants' dining rooms, his goal is to provide fresh mushrooms.

Herdrich started in agriculture "from the drop, I've always been gardening," he said of being raised on a commune near the Ozark Mountains of Arkansas. He grew into helping people start their own urban farms and followed his own "evolution" of learning about urban development and urban agriculture to cultivate his first mushrooms in his Rochester backyard.

At his farm, his crops aren't in rows or even in a field. The mushrooms mature in bags in the light, humidity and temperature-controlled environment of his basement. From strands of oyster mushrooms to the fruiting pink and gold oyster mushrooms, he's "branched out with confidence and consistency" to 85 varieties with their own flavor and texture.

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