The Mushroom Information Hall is the only permanently established mushroom information
center in the country. Everything about mushrooms, including the history of mushroom
cultivation, wild species, and the poisonous effect of various mushrooms, is explained
through countless displays including real samples.
The achievements of the founder of Mori & Company, Kisaku Mori (1908 - 1977), known
as the 'Mushroom Doctor' are also documented. Mori's method of growing shiitake mushrooms
by spawning spores in wood pieces is seen as one of Japan's three greatest inventions
within the realms of agriculture, forestry and fisheries, along with Koichi Mikimoto's
pearl cultivation and Sadayuki Waiuchi's trout farming. It has enabled Japan to become the
world's largest producer of shiitake.
President Mori opened the International Mushroom Hall Hotel on the top of Mt. Hirai to
the public in 1969 and in 1974, he held his first international event - 'The International
Conference on Edible Mushrooms'. His books include 'The Way to Health Through Shiitake'.
The wooded area around the hotel, called 'Japan's Mushroom Park', is home to the 'Mushroom
Restaurant and Teahouse', a research institute and other facilities.
The hotel and the restaurant offer a wide selection of mushroom delicacies
incorporating local and other produce, including soup, 'nabe' (a kind of Japanese stew),
sashimi, tempura, and various rice dishes. Entrance to the information center is free.
Closed Sundays and national holidays. Calling in advance is recommended.