Deadly dish: Mushroom curry poisoning in Yasothon kills one

Picture courtesy of KhaoSod

A group of contractors in Yasothon province experienced severe food poisoning after consuming a mushroom curry, resulting in the death of one person. The incident occurred after the mushrooms, later identified as toxic, were mistakenly included in their meal.

Residents of Moo 4 and Moo 5 in Dong Khaen Yai Subdistrict, Kham Khuean Kaeo District, were affected when several people fell ill and one person died after eating mushroom curry on June 18. The contractors, hired from Udon Thani, were working on home renovations and staying at the home of 71 year old Yun, who reported the incident.

“The group of contractors, whom I hired to renovate my house, bought various mushrooms from local villagers for 350 baht (US$10). The mushrooms included straw mushrooms, earth mushrooms, white mushrooms, and charcoal mushrooms.”

On the morning of June 16, the head contractor cleaned some of the mushrooms and had his wife prepare them into a curry for breakfast. Six contractors ate the meal together but Yun did not join them.

Related news

Approximately 10 to 15 minutes after eating, all six contractors began experiencing dizziness and vomiting, prompting suspicions that they had consumed toxic mushrooms. They were rushed to Yasothon Hospital for initial treatment.

While most recovered and were allowed to return home, the head contractor’s wife, identified as 53 year old Phaithun, required intensive care. She tragically passed away at 11pm the following day. The head contractor took her body back to their hometown in Si Samran Subdistrict, Nam Som District, Udon Thani Province, for religious rites.

Mushroom poisoning

An investigation revealed that the mushrooms likely causing the poisoning were charcoal mushrooms, which were mistakenly collected along with other edible varieties. Tia, a 35 year old local mushroom forager from Dong Khaen Yai Subdistrict, admitted to selling the mushrooms to the contractors.

“I collect and sell wild mushrooms daily for income. On the day of the incident, I gathered mushrooms from the community forest in Ban Na Thom, Dong Khaen Yai Subdistrict. It was my first time collecting from that area, and I collected various types, including charcoal mushrooms.”

Tia noted the toxic mushrooms resembled edible charcoal mushrooms but had key differences. The toxic mushrooms had tightly packed gills underneath the cap and were free of insect damage, contrary to edible varieties.

“I misunderstood the toxic mushrooms for charcoal mushrooms because of their dark colour and firm stems. Charcoal mushrooms should have soft stems.”

Tia added that he collected four of the toxic mushrooms by mistake.

A follow-up investigation led journalists to the Ban Na Thom community forest, where they found the toxic mushrooms resembling charcoal mushrooms. Local guides pointed out the distinguishing features, including the tight, small gills and the absence of insect damage, reported KhaoSod.

The affected villagers from Moo 4 and Moo 5 had similar experiences, with six people from Moo 4 falling ill and one dying, and three people from Moo 5, a family of three, also experiencing mushroom poisoning.

Northern Thailand NewsThailand News

Bright Choomanee

With a degree in English from Srinakharinwirot University, Bright specializes in writing engaging content. Her interests vary greatly, including lifestyle, travel, and news. She enjoys watching series with her orange cat, Garfield, in her free time.

Related Articles