The Pink Oyster Mushroom in NZ

  Posted on 04 July 2020  |    Hyphae  |    0 Comments

The Pink Oyster Mushroom is an exotic mushroom that is sometimes known as the Pink Flamingo. Pleurotus. djamor is a 'species complex', this is an old name with no fixed usage (original from Indonesia around 1650). No modern epitype of P. djamor has been designated so the use of that name is fluid.

In other words "P. djamor is many species and not one speices, a family"

Pleurotus djamor clade also includes New Zealand's endemic mushroom Pleurotus parsonsiae (the giant oyster).

The Pink oyster mushroom is banned in western Australia.

the pink flamingo oyster mushroom

Cooking The Pink Oyster Mushroom

Some chefs are hoodwinked into thinking it is a great thing to put on the menu and people who love photography love growing it because of its colour.

But you can see in from the above video it turns white When cooking for a short time.

This beautiful dish shows the amazing colour our endemic Pleurotus parsosnaie brings out when cooking.  Here is that recipe for the dish below :) 

The endemic version video below finishes with a beautiful purple-pink colored skin after cooking it for 7 minutes. You need to cook oyster mushrooms for a long time to release the amazing health benefits of the oyster mushroom. There would be nothing left of the pink oyster if you cooked it that long. 


The Scientific Reality

The exotic version is so close to our endemic version the first mycologists that came to NZ actually named our endemic version Pleurotus djamor (The Pink Oyster Mushroom). It was not until DNA advancement it was found to be different and was made its own organism in the gene bank. They look the same through a microscope and have the same spore sizes.

The dark truth that is they can both make a new organism, that could be the start to the end of our endemic mushroom Pleurotus parsonsiae (I believe I have already found this happening now in nature). It is all basic biology because both mushrooms are pure strains genetically and in the same clade so are interfertile. 

Now people are starting to grow Pleurtous parsonsiae the risk of genetic pollution is far greater. Now many companies are putting $$ over the environment and sell both species so you can unknowingly play a part in destroying our genetics. You could say that the writer of this post who introduced P. parsonsiae to the world as a growable mushroom may have increased the chance of destroying it. 

But why should people stop growing harmless native species that grow all year round even in the middle of winter in your back yard outside?. If you bought The Pink Oyster Mushroom in cold weather then it must have had assisted heating. The commercial growers are endangering our native species turning on heaters to grow exotic species just so the chefs can have pretty pink mushrooms that turn white when you cook them.

Of course, all this makes sense to the commercial growers in a world where Covid-19 an exotic disease had its most numbers ever on this day and the border remains closed.  I guess with that same mentality that is why they call themselves sustainable. 

Growing The Pink Oyster Mushroom

One commercial grower in Wellington uses over 20k of filters to stop the spread of spores but all over NZ even just up the road at Ohau there are commercial grow rooms of them pumping out billions of spores all night and all day. The pink oyster exotic comes from an area where they have very high temperatures. It actually hates growing in NZ winters, a cross-species would soon change that. So unless you are prepared to put on the heater to keep it going then do not bother growing it in winter. Most south island growers do not even try to grow it in winter.

Our endemic mushroom (Pleurtous parsonsiae) grows outside in these winter temperatures.


I cloned the highest yielding culture available in NZ just after a frost. You could kill your exotic Pink oyster just by having it in a really cold fridge.


Shockingly with all disrespect to the environment companies are selling dowels of the pink oyster mushroom for you to train the culture onto NZ native woods.

This could only end in effectively getting the genetics ready to take over native hardwoods upping the risk of genetic pollution of our native species.People are not educated and will end up growing both species within close range. If one person puts them on the same log it could be over. This is one of the most disgusting things I have seen yet. If you support that you are supporting the destruction of native species.

If you grow pink oyster mushrooms and send out billions of exotic unwanted spores every day to the natural environment and then claim you are sustainable you are outright lying to your customers. The Mushroom House is actually leading the industry using expensive filters. 

You are far better off buying from a supplier than spends money on filters protecting the environment like I did if you must buy the pink oyster mushroom. 

If you grow exotic pink oyster mushrooms at home then you do not really care at all for our amazing genetics. We have lost a heap of species in NZ from exactly this. Our rarest duck (Whio, only 2,000) has a hybrid species that is currently destroying its genetics. 


What we do know is our future generations will thank us for it. Do you really want to be studied in the future as part of the problem?


Want to learn more about Pleurotus in NZ? 

You can also read about why the pink oyster mushroom is allowed to be grown in NZ on the link below.

Click this: Pleurotus in NZ the good, the bad, and the ugly