S T A F F
Neil A. Brent, Founder/Owner/Farmer
Kaldi Bresnick, Farm Pup
See Columbia Mushroom Company in The Gorge Magazine Winter Edition 2017-18, pages 26-27
Columbia Mushroom Company began in a small greenhouse in the corner of Neil’s living room. At the time, he was pursuing a career growing liquid yeast for the brewing industry. He took up mushroom growing as a project similar to growing yeast, but with direct and delicious results. The excitement about mushrooms grew, and soon the space did too, moving to a room-within-a-room that we built ourselves. Upon moving onto our new property last year, we have been able to comfortably expand the farm and quadruple production. The growth of Columbia Mushroom Company has been wonderfully dynamic, as the industry of cultivating exotic mushrooms is still in its infancy. Every piece of equipment is an invention; every procedure is the summary of a thousand trial procedures. For these reasons and more, Columbia Mushroom Company is a true reflection of its founder, Neil Brent.
At Columbia Mushroom Company, simplicity and consistency are key. Using specialized mushroom cultivation bags, our mushroom mycelium first colonizes a grain substrate, before inoculating a sterilized mixture of supplemented sawdust. Once completely colonized, we cut open the sawdust bags, exposing the mycelium to the oxygen it needs to produce fruiting mushroom bodies. Our mushroom fruiting room has been outfitted to the proper light, humidity, and airflow for optimum mushroom growth. The mushrooms are picked to achieve a balance of flavor and shelf-life, with the consumer’s needs in mind. We then hand-package and hand-deliver, whether to our restaurants, wholesale buyers, or our local farmers markets.
Columbia Mushroom Company cares deeply about our people. Our community has been essential to us from the very beginning, and continues to be as we grow. As a Columbia Mushroom customer, we look forward to an open dialogue about your needs as a home cook, chef, or restaurant. Every mushroom is a success, and we are so thrilled to share that success with you.