Author(s): D Brauer, TE Kimmons, M Phillips, DE Brauer
Shiitake mushroom growers may be able to use the presence of health promoting constituents as a marketing tool to promote sales of their products for premium prices. There are few reports on the effects of management protocols for log- grown shiitakes on the concentrations of constituents to guide growers. In this chapter, a summary is given of the relationship of carbohydrate content as affected by shiitake strains, mushroom cap development, and length of saprophytic association. Shiitake carbohydrates include starch and lentinan, a compound identified as promoting human health. Results suggest that growers through the use of different fungal strains and growing conditions can manipulate carbohydrate constituents of shiitake mushrooms. Starch concentrations tended to be several fold greater than that of the lentinan fraction. In many instances, the concentrations of starch and the fraction containing lentinan were positively related.