A Lancashire grower is prospering as soaring demand for two obscure mushroom varieties are taking the UK’s plant-based food revolution by storm.
Brown Oyster Cluster and King Oyster mushrooms have become so popular because of their meat-like texture that sales have rocketed by nearly 240 per cent at Tesco.
They are also two of the key vegetables behind the success of the supermarket’s exclusive, pioneering Wicked Kitchen vegan food range.
As a direct result of the rising demand, the Brown Oyster Cluster mushrooms are now being commercially grown in the UK by specialist Lancashire producer Smithy Mushrooms.
And plans are already underway for the company to start growing the King Oyster variety later this year.
John Dorrian, Managing Director of Smithy Mushrooms, based in Ormskirk says the demand for the Brown and King Oyster mushrooms has been overwhelming and has necessitated the need to expand.
“The plant-based food revolution has had a major impact on sales and we are already at the planning stage for a new purpose-built farm which will allows us to grow more of these specialist varieties used in vegan cooking.
“We’ve been growing Oyster mushrooms here for 25 years but have never had demand like we’re seeing now.
“They are incredibly versatile and can be shredded to replicate pulled pork; thinly sliced to make kebab skewers and even sliced to make scallops that are indistinguishable from the meat variety.