Morel mushroom certification classes planned for March, April

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Morel certification workshops will be held on the Iowa State University campus in Room 191 of the Seed Science Building on Saturday, March 26, Saturday, April 9 and Saturday, April 16. Classes meet from 1-4 p.m.

Anyone interested in hunting and selling morel mushrooms in Iowa should take a three-hour class from Iowa State University Extension and Outreach and become certified to sell morel mushrooms legally within the state of Iowa.

All three morel certification workshops will be held on the ISU campus in Room 191 of the Seed Science Building, located at the northwest corner of Wallace Road and Osborn Drive. The classes will be held:

  • Saturday, March 26 from 1-4 p.m.
  • Saturday, April 9 from 1-4 p.m.
  • Saturday, April 16 from 1-4 p.m.

“The purpose of the workshops is to help assure that mushrooms sold as morels in the state are actually morels,” said workshop leader Mark Gleason of the ISU Department of Plant Pathology and Microbiology. “People can be poisoned by eating mushrooms that are misidentified as morels.”

In order to legally sell morel mushrooms in Iowa, sellers must complete a certification workshop on identifying morels and false morels. Certification lasts three years. Iowans who have not certified for three or more years must re-certify this year. Registration is also open to out-of-state individuals.

The workshop agenda includes a pre-training identification test, a presentation on recognizing morels, false morels and other species of wild mushrooms, and an examination of preserved morels and false morels.

A post-training identification test is then administered and training certificates received.

Free parking is available near the Seed Science Building in Lot 41 on the east side of Wallace Road. See the online ISU campus map for further instruction.

Registration for a workshop is due by Monday, March 21, by contacting Mark Gleason, 515-294-0579 or mgleason@iastate.edu. Interested individuals should indicate which workshop they plan to attend. Cost is $50 per person, payable at the training. Cash or checks are accepted but no credit cards.

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