At the recently held Fruit Logistica 2009 in Berlin Banken Mushrooms from Elst, The Netherlands, presented an innovation in the market of fresh mushrooms: Mushroom secrets. According to Bas Toonen, responsible for marketing and product development at Banken, the idea is to bring exotic mushrooms more within reach of a large public.
Toonen: “We organised an independent market survey in 2008 at a supermarket level to find out what people were looking for in mushrooms. It showed us that people wanted to eat more exotic mushrooms, but had no idea what to do with them. We would like to change this. We have introduced a few products for people that do not want to spend a lot of time in their kitchen, but that do want to eat fresh and healthy.”
At the Berlin fair the Dutch company presented Shii-take soup and Oyster Mushroom Wok. These are two products with fresh ingredients only that consumers have to prepare themselves. Toonen emphasises the combination of fresh and easy. “People like to spend as little time as possible in the kitchen, but the quality of the food has to be outstanding. These are not ready microwave meals, there is some preparation involved, but due to the consumer friendly nature we think there will be more focus on exotic mushrooms.”