Foothill Fungi is a small, family mushroom farm founded by owner Joel Gutierrez in 2017. Check out our detailed story here.
Following a lay-off from his job of 8 years in 2016, Joel established Foothill Fungi out of his desire to create an alternative strategy for generating income, food and medicine in a manner that benefits the environment. Currently, Foothill Fungi is located on a 1.8-acre property near Colfax, California where Joel lives with his wife, teenage son and two year old daughter.
With no investment capital to begin with, and a myriad of financial challenges along the way, we have been incredibly grateful to receive support and encouragement from community, friends and family who believe in us and our mission. Check out the article about our farm’s beginnings recently published by the Auburn Journal.
Some of Foothill Fungi's main accomplishments over the past two years include:
We remodeled a workshop into an indoor grow facility with two grow rooms with the ability to control light, temperature and humidity, one incubation room, one inoculation room and a prep area, all within 450 square feet! (All of the above was made possible by Joel's brother who invested significantly in the project, and a good neighbor and friend, who provided his construction skills).
We've had continuous success in adding new varieties and increasing production, most notably adding Oyster mushrooms early this year and within a few months, doubling the yield and selling all we can harvest on a regular basis.
We supply an Organic Food Co-Op with 15-20 pounds of mushrooms per week and sell an average of 70 pounds per week to a popular local restaurant in (name the town). Numerous other commercial outlets are in line to sell our mushrooms if we can expand production. In addition, we are in conversation with a local medicine company about purchasing Lion's Mane for medicinal products. We are also looking at potential application of our mushroom growing byproducts to commercial compost suppliers. However, in order to meet the needs of these new clients and sustain our farm, we need your help.
Foothill Fungi is truly on the brink of success and we are humbly reaching out for help from our community near and far to make this next step towards economic sustainability and longevity. This is a critical juncture, in which we must raise a minimum of $15,000 to invest in the future of our farm.Funds raised through this campaign will be used for the following:Additional shelving and a small greenhouse to increase the yield of our harvests so that our product sales can cover the costs of running the farm and maintaining our land and farm buildings.Completing the process to be Organically Certified, with all the associated fees and upgrades. We have almost completed this arduous but rewarding project! Bulk purchases of cultivation materials (a money and time saving investment!)Ensuring that our property and farm is adequately insured and fire safe, an increasingly expensive and difficult endeavor in today's fire climate, especially in our area.Purchasing a generator to provide the farm's electricity during the predicted extended power outages this summer, which could cost us weeks of income!
Your donations will be immediately applied to the projects listed above and will provide our farm and our family with some desperately needed support. You will help us to take the final step towards Foothill Fungi becoming a successful, established and sustainable small farm that provides food, medicine and environmental benefits to our friends, family and community members.
It is imperative that we raise these funds by the end of this summer as these projects are time sensitive. Please promote and share this as widely as you are able.
We are deeply grateful for all donations, small and large, and hold you and all our other supporters past and present dearly in our hearts. Thank you so much for your gifts!