The Minnesota Food Code is changing, and it’s not only going to affect the day-to-day duties of Minnesota food managers, but also change how they source and serve certain ingredients. One ingredient that is specifically targeted by upcoming regulation changes are wild mushrooms.
Wild Mushrooms and Minnesota Food Managers
Before we begin our discussion, it’s important to understand the difference between wild mushrooms and other mushrooms. Most food managers source their mushrooms from major food service suppliers. These mushrooms are cultivated in facilities that fall under the jurisdiction of the appropriate local food regulatory agency. Some of these mushrooms can be the same species as those harvested in the wild, but are produced by food processing facilities. True wild mushrooms, however, come from the great outdoors and must be individually inspected by a verified expert in the field of mushroom identification.
Under proposed rule changes, food managers must keep a closer eye on where their mushrooms are coming from. Once these regulations go into effect, mushrooms must come from “registered harvesters or inspected food processing plants.” These new restrictions add an extra layer of food-safety by requiring licensed harvesters to take added responsibility for their product.
If your menu includes ingredients sourced from wild mushroom harvesters, make sure that your supplier is properly registered. This may help ensure that your product is safe and provide the health department more information in the event of food-borne illness as a result of tainted mushrooms.
Also included in this proposal is the requirement that facilities serving wild harvested mushrooms place a notice on their menus that mushrooms served were harvested at a site that has not been inspected. While your harvester may be fully registered, this notice is required to make consumers aware that their food has not passed the official inspections required for mushrooms produced in other facilities.
Do you serve wild mushrooms in your restaurant? If so, how do you feel about these new rule changes?