Study the soil, the trees and their roots in search of mushrooms, because long walks like these are really part of his job. He regularly ventures in the hope of discovering new species of mushrooms hidden in the mud or high up in the trees.
"We want to collect as many different mushroom species as possible," said Landvik, a mycologist – a mushroom scientist – at the Novozymes biotechnology company. "Diversity is really the key word for everything we do."
Organisms have a plethora of applications that can benefit humanity in the production of food and alcohol, drugs, biofuels, detergents and even a famous childhood toy: LEGO.
Mushrooms are unique beings, explained Landvik. "They are so different from the plants and they are so different from the animals: they are their kingdom, the evolution of the mushrooms has radiated in so many different directions, they are truly incredible."
New ones are found looking for wooded areas, collecting soil samples and returning samples to the laboratory to be studied, says Landvik.
But the real ability is to understand how they work.
In nature, mushrooms are not able to move, so they compete against other fungi or bacteria for resources and, in doing so, produce toxic chemicals. In some cases, these chemicals have been useful to humans.
Once the samples reach the laboratory, says Landvik, are grown inside a Petri dish and cut into pieces, which are then placed in a flask with a liquid of nutrients such as minerals and vitamins and a coal source to help the mushrooms to grow.
Mushrooms grow by secreting enzymes – proteins that catalyze or accelerate chemical reactions – that are captured by the liquid inside the flask, allowing them to be studied in depth.
Thousands of mushrooms are studied before researchers encounter one that could be applied, Landvik said.
It's like a "lottery ticket", he says, because every discovery could turn out to be "something that can make a difference to the world, something we can make a greener industry, and so on."
How we look for useful enzymes 90 years later is still in serendipity.
Tom Prescott, a research leader at the Royal Botanical Gardens in Kew, UK, also notes the many useful mushroom applications.
"Broadly speaking, the three major themes are perhaps medicine, biotechnology and, in the broadest sense … mushrooms are really good to eat," he explained, in the Kew mushroom, a large room full of rows of boxes containing 1.25 million specimens of mushrooms from all over the world, including specimens collected by John Ray, Charles Darwin and Alexander von Humboldt.
People are discovering mushrooms on an annual basis, said Prescott at CNN. "That's all, from the mushrooms that you could see with the naked eye up to the microscopic fungi that you might not know were there, but we detect them using DNA."
Some famous examples of medical applications are lovastatin of the cholesterol-lowering drug produced by the fungus Aspergillus terreus, or a hepatitis B vaccine that is produced using yeast.
The fingolimod of the drug – used to treat the autoimmune disease multiple sclerosis – comes from a showy mushroom "zombi", Isaria sinclairii, which invades an insect, takes it and eventually behaves like an "evil puppeteer", checking the body and behavior of the insect to perform tasks that are beneficial to the fungus, said Prescott, holding a canned sample of the mushroom in his hand.
Meanwhile, the insect is kept alive, "so it's really creepy," he said. "It is essential that the fungus does not kill the insect initially, but keeps it alive, which is why it produces an immunosuppressive substance". This chemical is the miriocin, which also suppresses the human immune system.
"A lot of fundamental biochemistry and even immunology are shared, surprisingly, even among insects and humans, "he explained.
Mushrooms are also useful for converting one chemical into another, as in the production of vitamin B tablets
There has been a competition between human and fungal chemicals on which it is better to produce these pills, and mushrooms turned out to be a cheaper option, said Prescott.