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Holidays financed with black market mushrooms

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Mushrooms. Photo: APA/HELMUT FOHRINGER
16:30 CEST+02:00
Carinthia's mountain guard says it has uncovered a thriving black market in mushrooms, with some travellers funding their holidays by selling some of the more desirable edible fungi to restaurants.

Austria’s wet summer has been great for mushrooms, which have been popping up across the country’s woodlands.

And many top chefs probably think nothing of being offered fresh mushrooms for sale by tourists, but Carinthia’s mountain guard is cautioning them that this is a black market and they could find themselves under investigation by the police.

"Buying and selling without a license is prohibited by law," an investigator from the Soko mountain rescue team said.

In some cases, people have been selling up to 50 kilograms of mushrooms to Carinthian restaurants, and they are often holidaymakers who have been plundering the forests to pay for their vacation.

The mountain guard has said it will continue to monitor deliveries of mushrooms to Carinthia’s eating establishments.

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