Analysis of the regulatory environment applicable to products obtained from mushrooms and fungal mycelium

A research project at the University of Bayreuth, Campus Kulmbach; Faculty of Life Sciences: Food, Nutrition an Health; Chair of Food Law


The production of animal proteins is one of the most environmentally impacting industries and heavy investments are made into the development of plant-based and cell-cultured meat and dairy. Mushrooms provide a source of protein that can substitute proteins originated from animals. Moreover, mushroom-derived products are or will soon be commonly used as food ingredients or additives (e.g. dyes, fermenting agents, bitter blockers, etc.).

Mushroom-derived products and the regulatory framework

Investments in mushroom-derived products are likely to increase across the world. It is therefore expected that different national (UK), federal (USA) or supranational (EU) regulatory frameworks will be in competition to best enable such innovative products. While it is generally acknowledged that regulations can facilitate innovations, a number of scholars argue that the regulatory design may also function as an obstacle to innovation, particularly in the food sector.

The EU regulatory framework concerning foods derived from mushrooms has not been subject to a comprehensive study or review. Considering the pivotal role that a clear and predictable regulation can play in facilitating innovation, business may feel uncertain about the regulatory framework governing their access to the market.

What is missing is a hands-on comprehensive answer on how the EU legal system governs food innovations relating to mushrooms. This project will fill this gap. It will provide an in-depth legal analysis of the marketing of mushrooms, mushroom-derived products, or fungal mycelium and provide answers to innovative companies, policymakers, researchers and other stakeholders.

University of Bayreuth, Campus Kulmbach; Faculty of Life Science: Food, Nutrition and Health; Chair of Food Law
Project Manager: Prof. Dr. Kai Purnhagen, LL.M.

If you would like to receive further information, please contact us!

Wanted: Start Ups dealing with fungal protein or mycelium

To better ground our project in relevant market realities, we are looking for interviewees: Do you work in a start-up dealing with mushrooms/mycelium, or can you direct us to relevant companies? We would like to hear from you! Feel free to contact us via e-mail.