Frequently Asked Questions
Mushroom tea, also known as a decoction is a great way to enjoy functional mushrooms, a technique that has been practiced for millennia.
- Put around 1g per serving of mushrooms into a saucepan with some water and heat to a gentle simmer. 1g is considered a typical dose but you can have more or less than this depending on your preference and sensitivity.
- Simmer for 20 minutes or more… the longer the simmer, the “deeper” the decoction, meaning that more of the bioactive molecules will become available over time.
- One good way of achieving this is to fill your thermos flask with hot water and mushrooms, and over the day the bioactive compounds will be extracted.
The medicinal mushroom industry is rapidly growing in the West, which is great! Mushrooms have been ignored by the mainstream culture for many generations and they are finally being given their long overdue time to shine. However, for such a burgeoning industry, there is little regulation and reliable information on the subject. Many products on the market lack traceability and necessary information. It is therefore important as mushroom growers and tincture makers that we are as transparent as possible with our process, so you as the customer are informed as to what you are putting inside your body.
Why do we perform extractions? There are many bioactive compounds present in fungi that have a huge range of effects on the human physiology. However, these compounds are “locked” within the fungal cell and so we need to perform extractions to liberate these beneficial compounds. The fungal cell wall consists in part of a compound called chitin, the same compound that makes up crustacean shells and insect exoskeletons. Although many of us possess the enzymes to break down chitins, much more of the beneficial compounds will be accessed if we perform an extraction.
Our mushrooms are all either grown by us, on our farm in South Wales, or sustainably foraged from the local area. We use 100% mushroom fruiting bodies, no myceliated grain here. After harvest, the mushroom fruiting bodies are dried and ground into a powder. This dry mushroom powder is then left to steep in organic extraction ethanol for around 6 weeks – this creates the “tincture”, one part of our double extraction. We perform the alcohol extraction first in order to retain the volatile compounds present in the mushrooms that would evaporate under heat (see next step). The tincturing process extracts alcohol soluble compounds.
After completing the tincturing process, we strain out the mushroom material with a muslin cloth and add it to a large volume of water. This is then gently simmered for 6-10 hours, and the mixture slowly reduces to form a dark liquid known as a decoction. This process further breaks down the chitinous cell walls and captures the water soluble bioactive molecules such as the B-glucans for example.
When the decoction step has been completed the mushroom matter is then strained out again using a muslin cloth, and added to the tincture to form a double decoction. The alcohol concentration in the final mixture will be 25%, allowing long term storage of the extraction.
You can read more and see parts of the process in our blog entry here.
We do not filter our extractions and here is why… B-glucans are an important bioactive compound found in all medicinal mushrooms which are implicated in the modulation and stimulation of the immune system. They are long chains of branching polysaccharides found in the cell wall, which under heat open up and become entangled with water molecules – the polar (charged) parts of these molecules complex with the polar water molecules. This forms what is known as an aqueous gel in suspension – often a sort of jelly in practice. A common mistake is to employ too fine a filter, which catches the B-glucan gels and deprives the final extraction of much of its immune modulating power! Give our tinctures a good shake before using them, and don´t be put off by a little viscosity… that´s the good stuff.
Please allow 2-7 days for your order to arrive. Items are posted via Royal Mail Tracked 48 service. We are a small rural business and so items are dropped off twice a week at the depot. Postage is £3.35 for standard orders under 2kg and £6.95 for larger orders including grow kits.
The information contained in this website and presented by The Fungi Folks Ltd across all its media platforms (Facebook, Instagram) and the products offered are not intended to treat, cure, prevent, or diagnose any illness or disease. The information presented is solely for educational purposes and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.