Epicoccum is found worldwide. It is a very common invader of many different plant types, also infecting seeds from barley, oats, wheat, and corn. Moldy paper discoloration is frequently caused by Epicoccum and it produces the pigments carotene, torularhodin, and rhodoxanthin. Epicoccum is a "dry weather" spore more prevalent on dry, windy days, with counts higher in the late day. In California, counts were strongly associated with strawberry and artichoke harvests.
Epicoccum causes upper and lower respiratory tract disease. Compared to other fungi, the degree of Epicoccum skin sensitization is much greater than its prevalence in the air, producing the highest percentage of fungal skin test reactions in southeast Missouri.
Epicoccum sensitization appears ten-fold higher in hospitalized asthmatics than in mild community asthmatics. The thermotolerance of this fungus, with growth at 37°C, allows it to be a human pathogen. Phaeohyphomycosis, skin disease, has been reported with Epicoccum, as well as allergic fungal sinusitis. Hypersensitivity pneumonitis from a contaminated basement shower has been described.