Ayla Bioscience Inc.’s modern journey began in the private dining area of a cozy restaurant in Basel, Switzerland. After a lively discussion on the untapped potential of all fungi have to offer, our founders decided to come together to form an organization that is revolutionizing the world of mycology.
It was at this meeting that Dr John Holliday (Dr. John) agreed to come on board as Ayla’s CEO and President. Dr. John’s extensive experience in the large-scale production of mushroom products goes back decades. He first started growing mushrooms back in 1976 and has been growing them ever since. Seeing an unfulfilled niche in the market, he founded the company Aloha Medicinals Inc. from his home in Maui, Hawaii in the mid 1990’s. Medicinal Mushrooms were virtually unknown in North America at this time, even though they had been popular in Asia for centuries. With the founding of Aloha Medicinals, Dr. John single-handedly introduced North America to medicinal mushrooms, establishing the first large scale commercial Medicinal Mushroom production facility, and introduced retail-ready medicinal mushroom supplements to the public. Within just a couple of years, Aloha Medicinals became the world’s largest producer of medicinal mushroom products, a position it still holds today.
With branch offices in Mexico, Europe, Africa and Asia and distribution in over 65 countries, Aloha Medicinals became known as the producer of the highest-quality medicinal mushrooms available anywhere. For the last 20 years Dr. John and Aloha Medicinals have been supplying more than 700 companies worldwide with the raw materials needed for their products.
But during all these years working with commercial medicinal mushroom products, it was another mushroom that really held his fascination. But this was the one mushroom he couldn’t openly talk about. Growing any type of Magic Mushroom was strictly forbidden in America during those years. Ultimately though, his fascination prevailed. On weekends and after hours, diligently working in his back room, toiling away in his secret laboratory late at night, this passion consumed his every waking moment.