2013 Morel Mushroom Certification Workshops Offered in March, April

AMES, Iowa – Mushroom hunters who would like to legally sell morel mushrooms in Iowa need to complete a morel mushroom certification workshop. Iowa State University Extension and Outreach is offering the workshop at several Iowa locations in March and April.

“The aim of the workshop is to help assure that misidentified mushrooms are not sold as morels,” said plant pathology professor Mark Gleason. “To meet the need for this training, we are offering a three-hour certification workshop on identifying morels and false morels.”

Gleason coordinates and conducts the workshops, which will be held at three sites in 2013. Certification lasts for three years, so those who certified in 2010, when the Iowa law requiring certification first took effect, will need to recertify this year.

2013 morel certification workshop locations

  • Altoona: 1 to 4 p.m. Saturday, March 23, Polk County Extension Office, 1625 Adventureland Dr., Suite A
  • Bettendorf: 1 to 4 p.m. Thursday, April 4, Scott County Extension Office, 875 Tanglefoot Lane
  • Dubuque: 1 to 4 p.m. Saturday, April 6, Dubuque County Extension Office, 14858 West Ridge Lane, Suite 2

The agenda for each workshop includes:

  • Pre-training identification test
  • Presentation on recognizing morels and false morels as well as other species of wild mushrooms
  • Examination of fresh and preserved morels and false morels
  • Post-training identification test (and re-testing as needed)
  • Wall-size and wallet-size training certificates

Those interested in attending one of the workshops should preregister by emailing Gleason at mgleason@iastate.edu or calling 515-294-0579 by Monday, March 26. Preregistration is important, allowing appropriate space and materials to be available at all training venues.

The workshop fee is $50 per person, payable at the training. Cash or check accepted; no credit cards.

Additional questions about the workshops can be directed to Mark Gleason, 515-294-0579; mgleason@iastate.edu.


Photo courtesy Michael Hodge (Flickr Creative Commons).


I agree that this would be

I agree that this would be nice as an online course. But I mostly think it would be nice if there were a couple of new dates added since I have missed the mark already.

FIFTY DOLLARS??!!!!!! That's


That's EXTORTION! I've been hunting Morels all my life (I'm 50) and had the best teacher ever; my grandfather. He taught me about all the different types of mushrooms we could find on his farm while growing up as a boy and I've hunted practically every spring since. He also used an awesome field guide book that he would bring to the woods and would show me clearly which ones were the 'right' mushrooms vs. which ones to stay away from. I must have hunted 10 seasons with my grandfather and we would always do very well and the meals we had were out of this world! His special seasonings and beer batter were the best!...

But FIFTY DOLLARS? This should be a FREE service and rather than limiting to just 3 locations through the state, this should be an online venue where people could login to and view the videos. As it is, there are 100's of instructional videos on youtube about proper identification of morels vs. the others.

I suppose I should have known once you see "Iowa State" behind anything, you'll be paying up the gumpstump. Absolutely ludicrous.

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