Tremella (Tremella fuciformis)
Also known as snow fungus or white jelly mushroom, the tremella is one of the most popular mushrooms in Chinese cuisine and medicine. Its manner of growth is particularly fascinating as tremella is actually a form of yeast that alone cannot produce fruiting bodies. Tremella first exists in a mucous form and grows until it encounters a suitable host: a member of the Annulohypoxylon genus of fungi. When these two fungi meet, the tremella forms a parasitic relationship to its host, its cells merge with the host, and from this fusion a tremella mushroom can grow.
The tremella mushroom is known on the one hand for its culinary uses in Chinese and Taiwanese food, and on the other hand for its cosmetic uses as an ingredient in anti-ageing and beauty products. The vital mushroom has a much higher water-binding capacity than hyaluronic acid.