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Indian mushrooms bloom in US
    #4274546 - 06/09/05 03:31 AM (12 years, 11 months ago)


Indian mushrooms bloom in US
May 26, 2005

MUMBAI, MAY 25: Indian companies are making a killing at the Natural Restaurant Show, the largest food service event in North America attended by over 75,000 industry professionals from 140 countries.

Of the various products on display by Indian companies, IQF mushrooms are finding increasing acceptance by the Americans. Himalya International Ltd, pioneer in the exports of IQF mushrooms and vegetables having its own mushroom cultivation in backward hilly state of Himachal Pradesh has received an order worth $1.2 million from Cohen Foods, USA one of the largest wholesale food chains in America.

Himalya has received this order while participating in ?The National Restaurant Show?, an annual event where visitors come to see new product ideas and presentations. Initial discussions with a large restaurant chain is on and it is estimated that a sales commitment of over $2.5 million will be signed by the end of this 4 day event.

The company has hopped quickly from canned mushrooms to IQF mushrooms to a mix of frozen mushrooms for Burgers to cheese stuffed mushrooms in the category of hors d vours and appetizers. It is the first company to have introduced mushroom stuffed samosa in the US market. It also plans to launch frozen mushroom soup later this year.

Himalya has recently also bagged an export order of Rs 40 million for specialty mushroom products. The company has launched its new line of gourmet products under the brand ?Grower?s Gourmet?. The trademark has been registered in the US. The company will shortly launch a new website ?www.growersgourmet.com? to launch its new value added gourmet products.

HIL is the first Indian company having launched value added, finished, ready-to-eat appetizers for mainstream population in the US.

According to Indiaagronet, a website dedicated to Indian agriculture, out of about 2,000 edible mushrooms known, about 280 species are produced in India. The most important mushroom collected in India is the Guchhi (Morchella species), which is dried and exported to Western countries, rather than being consumed domestically.

Domestic consumption of canned mushrooms is quite low in India, it has managed to foster exports due to the huge marketable surpluses. It was only after 1990 that the export level of mushrooms began to pick up substantially.

Currently, besides Himalya International, there are only two major exporters of canned mushroom, namely Flex Foods and Ponds Ltd, and five new companies have entered the market recently. Countries like the Switzerland and the USA have ranked as comparatively consistent importers of canned mushrooms from India in the recent years.

As far as the import market is concerned, the most significant buyer of canned white button mushroom is Germany. This country alone accounts for almost 40% of the world imports. USA also imports canned mushroom, accounting for about 19% of the world imports.

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