Champignons, mushrooms, tortulhos, shitake, pleurotus, maitake, turkey tail, lion’s mane, reishi or cogumelo do tempo, among others, will be featured at the Autumn Bio Festival, which will take place at Ferraria, in Barcouço, municipality of Mealhada (district of Aveiro), from November 30th to December 3rd.

“We want the mushroom to be the king of the festival, along with distinguishing the presence of other delicacies from the region, such as leitão, negalhos or chanfana. This festival aims to call attention to a resource in the region that has not been properly taken advantage of”, stated fungus businessman Ricardo Torres.

In a statement given to Lusa, the businessman explained that the Bairrada region has a great diversity of ecosystems, which allow for a great variety and quantity of mushrooms.

“The region has not known how to take advantage of this potential of mushrooms and fungi in general. Fungi range from yeast to mushrooms and our entire food culture is based on the culture of these beings”, he maintained.

In his opinion, “the kingdom of fungi is much more than a plate of rice of míscaros”, this event also serves to “take a more transversal approach”.

“We intend to highlight the importance of fungi in our gastronomy, but also in the health and development of the region”, he added.

As claimed by Ricardo Torres, the event aims to “put the little ones on stage” and to boost the small businesses linked to the region’s land and give visibility to their products.

“And when I talk about change, I’m referring to the entire region, not just Mealhada, but all the surrounding municipalities”, he concluded.

The program includes the seminar “Mushrooms from the meadow to the plate”, scheduled for the first day of the festival, at Grande Hotel do Luso, which is “associated with a research and development project led by the University of Coimbra, including some companies and associations as partners”.

Two mycological tours have also been planned, the first on December 1st, in the Bussaco mountain range, “to have contact with mushrooms that exist in this ecosystem of oak and pine forests”.

The second mycological tour takes place the following day, in the Gândara region, in the municipality of Cantanhede, “where there is more sand”.

“After the mycological tours, we have set up an activity for the identification of the harvested mushrooms, to create awareness of their toxicity and to prevent accidents, we will focus on information and knowledge”, he explained.

The event organised by the Social and Cultural Center of Ferraria, will also feature workshops, music, street entertainment and around two dozen exhibitors of crafts, chocolates and others.