- Hans Weber
- December 6, 2023
Czechs Achieve Record-breaking CZK 7.89 Billion Worth of Forest Fruit Collection in 2022
Czechs made history in 2022 by collecting forest fruits valued at a record-breaking CZK 7.89 billion, according to the Ministry of Agriculture. The most sought-after treasures in the woods were mushrooms, blueberries, raspberries, and blackberries. Six out of ten Czechs visited forests at least once a month, based on data processed by the Czech University of Life Sciences Faculty of Forestry and Wood Sciences for the Ministry of Agriculture.
Comparing the period from 2016 to 2022, the second-highest forest fruit collection occurred in 2020, reaching CZK 7.16 billion. The third-highest was recorded in 2017, amounting to CZK 6.63 billion. However, last year’s extraordinary figures were notably impacted by the surge in forest fruit prices, coupled with the effects of inflation.
Among the commonly harvested forest fruits, mushrooms emerged as the clear winners. With almost 25,000 tons of mushrooms gathered from the woods, their value amounted to CZK 5.2 billion. This reaffirms the Czech Republic’s status as one of the global leaders in mushroom hunting.
Blueberries ranked as the second most collected fruit, with 6.7 thousand tons collected, valued at CZK 1.21 billion. Raspberries followed with a harvest of 2.6 thousand tons, amounting to CZK 562 million. On average, each household managed to gather 8.2 kg of mushrooms, 3.4 kg of blueberries, 3.3 kg of blackberries, 1.8 kg of raspberries, 1.6 kg of blackberries, and 1.4 kg of cranberries.
The Czech Republic stands out for its free access to forests. Last year, 64.3% of Czech residents ventured into the woods at least once a month. The average individual made over 36 forest visits annually. The Central Bohemian Region boasted the highest forest attendance, even drawing in residents of Prague seeking mushrooms.
Unlike some European nations, the Czech Republic does not enforce legal restrictions on forest fruit collection. For instance, Austria permits up to two kilograms of mushroom collection, Germany imposes limits on individual mushroom harvesting, and in Switzerland, mushroom hunting is restricted to specific days. The Netherlands maintains the strictest approach in the EU, where any quantity of mushroom collection is prohibited, considering it a form of poaching if caught.
Article by Prague Forum