First new mushroom variety in 30 years to be launched across UK

31 Aug 2011

Work began in 2006 and three strains of mushroom were identified as the best possibilities to develop a new variety.

The first new mushroom variety to be launched in 30 years is to go on sale across the UK tomorrow.

Called Forestiere, the new mushroom is also sweeter than traditional varieties which it is hoped will help parents encourage their kids to eat their vegetables.

Another advantage is that when it is cooked its colour doesn’t run out like with other mushroom varieties.

It has a slightly nutty taste and is cream coloured making it stand out against traditional white or brown varieties.

The news should go down well with the UK’s growing number of brown mushroom lovers with sales rising by 50 per cent in the last year.

The mushrooms, which have been developed by Irish producer Monaghan, will go on sale at x Tesco stores from tomorrow and will cost £1.25 for a 250g packet.

Said Tesco mushroom buyer Simon Mandelbaum: “We know that whenever we stock new tasting and different coloured varieties of fruit and vegetables they go down well with parents

“Recently we started selling pink mushrooms and pink, orange and green cauliflower florets which have sold well so we think that the Forestiere mushroom should also do well.

“But another innovation is that unlike other mushrooms the Forestiere does not seep out its colour when being cooked so by using them in dishes like mushroom risotto they won’t turn out with a tinge of brown.”

The Forestiere was developed by one of the UK’s leading mushroom growers and suppliers, Monaghan Mushrooms who are based in the Republic of Ireland in conjunction with Sylvan, the world’s largest spawn manufacturer.

Work began in 2006 and three strains of mushroom were identified as the best possibilities to develop a new variety.

Said Monaghan Mushrooms group marketing manager Stephen Allen: “We developed the Forestiere mushroom because we wanted to discover a mushroom that offered customers a new taste experience and gave them something new.

“Mushrooms lovers and aficionados had said to us over the years that nothing came close to the taste of a freshly picked field mushroom.

“When we started the project we set out to discover a new mushroom that had all the taste and flavour of a field mushroom yet at the same time looked familiar, was very versatile and could be used in a wide variety of foods.”

Some of the nutritional benefits of mushrooms are as follows:

-- Mushrooms are low in fat and calories with typically less than 0.5g fat and 15 calories (kcal) per 100g
-- Mushrooms count towards your 5-a-day
-- They are a source of folic acid which supports the development of your baby before and during pregnancy
-- They are a source of niacin for a healthy nervous system
-- They are a source of pantothenic acid for healthy mental performance

Forestiere mushrooms will be available in 400 Tesco stores across the UK.