Avondale-Based American Mushroom Institute Highlights Growing Interest in Exotic Varieties

Image via the Mushroom Council.

According to the American Mushroom Institute in Avondale, interest in specialty mushrooms such as portabellas is growing nationwide, writes Jim Offner for The Packer.

“Consumers are becoming more adventurous chefs and enjoy trying new recipes in the kitchen,” said Daniel Rahn, project manager with AMI.

Statistics from the latest National Agricultural Statistics Service report by the U.S. Department of Agriculture back this up. It shows that sales of commercially-grown specialty mushrooms was $95 million in 2015/2016, a 30 percent jump over the previous year.

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Gale Ferranto, president of Buono Foods in Landenberg, has also noticed an increased demand for specialty mushrooms.

“We’re seeing some volume moving in that specialty market,” she said.

The consensus among mushroom growers is that consumers are becoming more sophisticated and adventurous. They are moving away from traditional white and brown mushrooms that used to be the staple across the country.

Kevin Donovan, sales manager with Kennett Square’s Phillips Mushroom Farms, underlined this by saying that demand for morels, a wild mushroom, is booming.

“Wild mushrooms are going to be limited only by how much people can find,” he said.

Read more about the growing interest in specialty mushrooms in The Packer here.

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