Production and consumption of the shiitake mushroom has increased steadily since 1945. Interdisciplinary research has facilitated these increases. Japan, the major producer, accounts for nearly 83% of the total world production. Over 60% of the total world production is dried before consumption. In Taiwan, South Korea, and China, nearly all shiitake mushrooms are used in the dried form. Most shiitake are produced on natural logs. However, many farms in the USA, Taiwan, Canada, and Singapore are now producing shiitake on synthetic substrate. The main advantages of synthetic log cultivation over the natural log method are time and efficiency.