Giorgio Fresh Co. seeing success with stuffed mushroom offerings
Giorgio Fresh Co. has a long-standing tradition of growing high-quality mushrooms to fit customers’ needs.
“Through our innovative practices, we can produce a high volume of mushrooms to meet the ever-growing demand of the market,” said Bryan Shelton, vice president of sales and marketing for the Temple, PA-based company. “Today, we are a multi-faceted company and one of the largest growers of mushrooms in the world. Giorgio has been ‘America’s Favorite Mushroom’ year after year, by upholding the family tradition of excellence and by implementing the innovative ‘continuous improvement’ management philosophy called Kaizen.”
With years of experience behind its name, Giorgio Fresh knows what it takes to be a success in the mushroom industry.
“It requires a combination of knowledge, skills, and strategies,” Shelton said. “By understanding the market, producing high-quality mushrooms, maintaining efficient production processes, using effective marketing strategies, staying innovative and committing to sustainability, you can increase your chances of success.”
In 2023, mushrooms are trending in meat departments, deli departments, produce departments and hot bars and the demand is as large as ever.
“Consumers are increasingly interested in stuffed mushrooms, and blending mushrooms with meat for a healthier alternative,” Shelton said.
Giorgio Fresh offers white mushrooms, brown mushrooms, exotic mushrooms (shiitake, maitake, royal trumpets, oyster, beech), organic mushrooms (white whole, white sliced, baby bella whole, port caps, port sliced, shiitake), dried mushrooms (black trumpet, chanterelle, lobster, morel, oyster, paddy straw, porcini, portabella, shiitake sliced, shiitake whole, soup blend, stir fry, wood ear) and stuffed mushrooms (imitation bacon and cheddar, imitation crab seasoning, artichoke and spinach, fiesta, Mediterranean, buffalo blue cheese and garlic parm).
The company works with the Mushroom Council to locate trends in the industry and find ways to better create demand for mushrooms at the retail level.
“In today’s marketplace, consumers’ money-saving measures are putting enormous pressure on units and volume in departments around the store,” Shelton said. “But there are still pockets of growth and stuffed mushrooms are one of them.”
In the produce department alone, he cites retailers are selling nearly 10 million stuffed mushroom units, which is up 65 percent versus the pre-pandemic normal level of 2019 and an astounding 135 percent over the past five years.
“More retailers are selling them, and the offering is expanding,” Shelton said. “One of the best ways to boost sales is cross-merchandising. Mushrooms are known as the food that goes with everything. Placing mushrooms in areas such as the meat sections for kabobs or next to peppers and onions for sautés is highly effective. We encourage retailers to think outside the box and use signage to give shoppers inspiration for new ways to use mushrooms in their daily cooking.”