The Best Environment for Shiitake Cultivation is in Central Kyushu from an area called Takachihogo.
Takachihogo is right in the middle of Oita, Miyazaki, and Kumamoto, where 70% of all Shiitake are produced in Japan. Shiitake here are slowly grown at a high altitude where the temperature is cool. The southernmost ski area in Japan is located close by where a large amount of snow accumulates.
The Takachihogo environment is why the Shiitake grown here have a great flavor and texture. The critical climatic factors are:
1. Minimal rainfall but much fog.
The mountainous area prevents an overabundance of rain but creates much fog, which is a perfect environment to provide moisture for Shiitake. Minimal rain prevents the logs where the Shiitake are grown from becoming overly wet, where the fog creates a consistent but optimal minimum level of moisture, This allows for the Shiitake to grow slowly developing the best flavor and texture.
2. High elevation with cool temperatures.
The logs where the growth culture for Shiitake are initially grown, are placed at an altitude of around 500-800 meters high. For example at an altitude of 560 meters, an average daytime temperature of over 25℃ is rare.
Another critical factor providing for slow growth.