Pieter Vedder passes away

May 2, 2024

Pieter J.C. Vedder, a scientific pioneer in commercial mushroom cultivation and education passed away on Tuesday, April 30, 2024, at his home in the USA.


Pieter was born on April 29, 1929, in Duiven, the Netherlands, the youngest son of three. His father grew peaches, plums, grapes, and tomatoes under glass. He graduated in 1957 at Wageningen University (horticulture and horticultural engineering), with excellent grades. Pieter also had a degree in teaching.

In 1957 he became assistant A of the Research Station for Mushroom Cultivation and became an instructor and head of the Education Department, and was involved in the establishment of the Center for Mushroom Cultivation Education in Horst, Limburg, in ’62. There he was the principal and teacher from ’66 on, until August 1983. In this function, he had a great influence of the booming Dutch mushroom sector.

In 1961 he published his first publication Modern Mushroom Growing; five more editions and many languages followed. By 1978, his book had been translated into five languages and was called a unique achievement by the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, Directorate of Agricultural Education. In 2020, the last revised edition of the ‘bible of mushroom growing’ was published.

In 1982, Pieter received the Sinden Award from the Mushroom Growers Association in the UK, the highest accolade in the Mushroom Industry at that time.

From 1983 on, his career turned international, working for Campbell Soup International as Vice President Training and Development from August 1983 to March 1989 and Head of the Technology Division at Fungi del Montello in Italy from 1989 to 1990. In between and after, he worked as an international expert/consultant/lecturer around the world until 2004, with his partner Mariette.

Besides his mushroom career, Pieter was very active member of the community in the Venray-Horst region, serving as committee member and chairman of several organizations and president of the local Rotary Club. Pieter was a great supporter and board member of the local Heart of Georgia Community Concert Association and The Dublin Association of Fine Arts, Inc. Under his leadership and diplomacy, the two merged. (Playing) Music was one of his hobbies, as were photography, gardening and cycling.

As Mariette VandenMunckhof-Vedder, his wife of over 40 years, says in her press release; ‘Thus ends an intense but very humble life, focused on commercial mushroom cultivation education and also a life of always being there for others and often pro bono’. 13 years after a quadruple bypass, his heart stopped beating on April 30th. Marielle said to Mushroom Business: “He never had time to look back, and was always busy, even after he stopped working at 75, I will dearly miss him.” As will the mushroom sector.


Picture of Pieter Vedder from 2022 with a biker jacket (he used to drive a motorbike).

Photo: Mariette



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