Meet Our Mycophiles
We are extremely fortunate to work with some of the friendliest fungal enthusiasts around.
CFO - Chief Fungal Officer
A State of Michigan Certified Mushroom Expert, Owner,
Manager and quite a fun, kind soul. Chris conducts classes, sells at
markets, produces, harvests, and a whole host of other day to day tasks.
Ever curious and rarely conventional, Chris' lifelong interest in science and nature equipped him with the skills to pursue a passion which at the time had few resources for the average person.
Though an introvert through and through, Chris has
learned to love working the markets as much as he does a good afternoon
alone harvesting in our beautifully situated, partially subterranean,
You can find Chris every Saturday, all year long, at the Fulton Street Farmers Market in Grand Rapids, unless he's off visiting other markets. He also attends many Sunday markets in East Lansing with his partner Jess.
"I would work every market, and answer every question if I could. I love sharing what we do and what fungi do for us." - Chris
Chris' favorite fungus: The one he's currently eating, also chicken of the woods (Laetiporous Cinncinnatus, Laetiporous sulphureus)
Having long been fascinated by fungi, my interest in growing them was fueled by a visit to Detroit's Eastern Market about a decade ago. After happening upon the mushroom vendor, I soon found myself the new owner of a curious pet; a living, breathing, mass of mushroom mycelium silently chomping away at it's bag of mysterious substrate. Neither plant nor animal, this curious creature, I was assured, would soon bare even more curious fruit, Hypsizygus ulmarius, the elm oyster, if given proper care.
Thus began a love story, and a life story, that continues to unfold in a fascinating and incredibly fortuitous fashion. Whatever brought you here, I want to thank you for sharing in our story, for your support, and for you love of the natural world and the most delicious and underappreciated kingdom of life: Fungi.
Jess is a native of the Upper Peninsula and moved to Grand Rapids in
Spring of 2020 to pursue her newfound love with a particular local
mushroom farmer. Formerly mushroom naïve, Jess has quickly developed a
deep love for the eating, sharing, and taking care of our little fungal
An incredibly kind, caring, and tireless individual, Jess' presence has transformed our little business and arrived at just the right time to help orchestrate our transition from a fledgling farm to a community resource for all things mushrooms.
Jess performs any and all tasks around the farm and warehouse, from washing laundry and packing orders to fielding calls, creating spreadsheets, and graphic design. A self-taught business owner who's not afraid of hard work.
With a heart of gold and a contagious positivity, you'd be lucky to have Jess as your local mushroom vendor, and if you attend the Meridian Farmers Market in Okemos on Saturdays, you are!
Find her there every Saturday at the marketplace near Meridian mall. As well as many Sundays at the East Lansing Farmer Market.
Chris' older sister Alissa, her husband Ken, and two daughters moved to Michigan in January 2020 and her addition has been tremendously helpful in developing Mycophile's into a viable business.
Just when we really needed a hand, big sis was there to give her time and energy. With a wonderful work ethic and a flair for style and organization, her assistance has been invaluable, working with her is effortless and we're so thankful to spend our time with her.
Alissa works at both our greenhouse and distribution facility, as well as the Holland Farmers Market every Saturday all year and every Wednesday from May-December.
Mack, Jess' brother, is new to the Grand Rapids area as well, and we're extremely thankful for him. Mack is always willing to do what needs to get done and his attitude is never less than pleasant. Mack fills in at markets but does most of his work behind the scenes, driving deliveries, purchasing and hauling materials, harvesting at the farm, and much more. Attentive to detail and extremely easy to work with, Mack helps in ways that only family can ( or would ).
Additional (And Invaluable) Mycophiles