At Mycopolitan, we use sustainable methods to grow specialty mushrooms for restaurants, school cafeterias and home kitchens in the Delaware Valley. We assist fledgling mushroom Growers and teach the next generation of scientists and nature-lovers how to work with fungi. Our substrate originates from local saw and flour mills and, after it yields mushrooms, returns to the land as soil.
Mushrooms are a staple of Pennsylvania Agriculture. Mycopolitan is Philadelphia's mushroom farm.
The first mushroom farms in Europe and america were housed in caves warehouse basements, throughout much of the year, maintain a similar temperature environment. With careful attention to airflow and cleanliness, we've transformed Common Market's basement into a fully functioning mushroom farm, from Hyphae to harvest. Mushrooms are back underground!
We began building our farm in March 2014. 13 metal and 14 wooden shelves, a lab, a sterilizer, two hoop houses, Humidification and ventilation systems, and packaging station had to be built with limited funds. Keeping things under budget was a challenge but has granted us the flexibility to adapt and improve as we grow.
A mushroom's needs are simple: air, light, water, moderately cool temperatures, humid microclimate, and cleanliness are the essentials. ADd daily attention to the crop, and the mycelium provides generously in turn. Each day we try to learn something new from the fungi on our farm or in nature, and our respect for the world of fungi increases. This knowledge informs and transforms the farm.
the model we've proven on our farm IS WORKABLE IN ANY CITY WHERE INDUSTRIAL SPACES AWAIT RENEWAL. THE CLOSER FARMS ARE TO URBAN CENTERS, THE MORE FOOD SECURE OUR CITIES BECOME.
Tyler started foraging mushrooms at 17 and became obsessed with the palette of flavors made available through a keen eye in the forest. This passion eventually compelled him to build a small home lab to clone, isolate, and grow out the mushrooms he found. Noticing the glaring omission of fungi from his academic schooling, in 2012 tyler began sharing his knowledge of fungi with students at Saul High School on a volunteer basis. When he isn’t growing, hunting, yapping about or eating mushrooms, he's usually listening to podcasts, playing music, camping, cooking, or writing. Tyler studied Neuroscience at Columbia University. now he thinks like a mushroom.
Before meeting Tyler and Brian in 2014, Dan was growing mushrooms at home as a hobby. One night grabbing a drink in West Philly he linked up with them, and the rest was history. If he is not at the farm, you can find him at home, in front of his flow hood, playing with spores and cultures in a never ending quest for the perfect strain. The only time this cat doesn't have mushrooms on the brain is when he is at the park with his dog, or on his roof, staring into space, watching out for shooting spores. Dan's background includes managing employees and inventory at food establishments. now he is the engine that keeps the farm growing.
BRIAN’S LIFE WAS INFILTRATED BY FUNGI IN 2012, AND HE’S MADE IT HIS ONGOING PASSION TO LEARN ALL HE CAN ABOUT CULTIVATION, FORAGING, MICROBIOLOGICAL LIFE, AND PERMACULTURE. HE LOOKS WITH EXCITEMENT TOWARD THE NEXT PHASE OF HIS EXISTENCE, BEGINNING WITH THE LAUNCH OF MYCOPOLITAN AND CONTINUING ON TO SHARE THE BOUNDLESS CULINARY, NUTRITIONAL, MEDICINAL, REMEDIATIVE, AND SPIRITUAL BENEFITS THAT MUSHROOMS PROVIDE TO A LARGER POPULATION. BRIAN STUDIED PSYCHOLOGY AT TEMPLE, BUT NOW SEEKS TO INTEGRATE HIS LOVE OF NATURE AND THE OUTDOORS WITH MYCOLOGY, ECOLOGY, AND FARMING TOWARD A TRUE PATH OF UNDERSTANDING.
Mycopolitan was made possible by the financial support of Dave Novak, life-long friend of Tyler. He also brings a level of business acumen to the company that helps keep the farm profitable as it grows. Dave attended Drexel and studied Business Administration. Dave's got an unwavering poker face but can't help blushing every time he sees the mushrooms that spring from his investment.