“Most of what we do here is retail, and the promotional discounts are still being done, but they’re also going in combination with the recipes and how to use and what to use,” he said.
“I think that’s also helping to promote the mushrooms.”
Larger packs available at retail are drawing consumer attention, said Tom DeMott, chief operating officer of San Ramon, Calif.-based Encore Associates, which analyzes data for the Mushroom Council.
“What’s happening this year is the upsizing on whites,” DeMott said.
“There’s been a good strong trend of retailers offering and consumers buying a little bit larger packages of whole and sliced mushrooms. Rather than the traditional 8- or 6-ounce, we’re seeing more 10-, 12-, 16-ounce packages of white mushrooms going out the door.”
“Mushrooms are extraordinarily healthy, and I think people are recognizing the value,” DeMott said.
“Mushrooms are generally enjoying a renaissance right now. They’re very similar to onions from the perspective that no one buys an onion just to eat an onion. And no one buys mushrooms just to eat a mushroom. So you’re making salads and sauces. Certainly with the portabellas that’s become a great substitute for people interested in grilling mushrooms.”
The brown mushrooms have been particularly effective in that vein, DeMott said.
“Portabellas are fantastic on the grill, so I think you have this whole renaissance going with mushrooms that’s been very positive,” he said.