Toxic mushroom poisonings sweeping across Japan

TOKYO, Nov 13 (News On Japan) - Poisonous mushrooms typically found in summer and autumn are appearing simultaneously in Japan, leading to a spate of food poisonings nationwide.

The aesthetically appealing white Fukurotsurutake, Amanita volvata, is a highly toxic mushroom, typically found in summer.

Mushroom expert Kazuo Odachi says, "It's pure white, looks beautiful and tasty, right? This is the Fukurotsurutake. Eating just one can kill a person. This mushroom causes the worst poisoning symptoms. Eating it leads to diarrhea and vomiting within one or two days. About a week later, symptoms like bloody stools and jaundice start. By then, it's usually too late for treatment."

Fukurotsurutake can be found in familiar places, Odachi warns, "This mushroom is found everywhere - Shinjuku Gyoen, Hibiya Park, Yoyogi Park."

Another summer mushroom, Kaburaasetake, is extremely poisonous, with toxins that inhibit the autonomic nervous system.

The prolonged heat and lack of rain delayed the growth of summer mushrooms, which are now appearing alongside autumn mushrooms.

Odachi says even though "it's time for autumn mushrooms, we're finding summer mushrooms. There was no rain for a long time, so the summer mushrooms were just waiting."

"Since summer mushrooms are also appearing, assuming that they don't appear in autumn might lead to mistakes in identifying poisonous mushrooms," Odachi adds.

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