Monthly Shipping Report | May 2015
- The next Council meeting is September 16-17 in Seattle, WA. If you plan on attending, please email Cheryl@mushroomcouncil.org so we can make sure you are accommodated.
- Click Here to see the May Bulletin from the Mushrooms and Health Global Initiative. In it you’ll find the latest research on vitamin D mushrooms and bone health; and the immune benefits of shiitake.
- Ballots: Nominations are now closed. Ballots are being prepared and will be mailed on June 1, 2015. Regions with positions opening up are Region 2; PA (two positions) and Region 3 (one position).
- USDA and the Mushroom Council encourage all eligible producers, including women, minorities and individuals with disabilities to participate in the nominations and seek nomination to serve on the Council.
To see current charts click here.
- Scale Down, Women’s Health, April 2015
- Foods that help you lose, Health, April 2015
- A focus on fruits and vegetables, School Foodservice & Nutrition, 4/1
- 12 fantastic Final Four snacks for hungry basketball fans, FOX News, 4/6
- Modern lifestyles low on vitamin D, Chicago Tribune, 4/8
- Modern lifestyles low on vitamin D, Orlando Sentinel, 4/9
- 5 White Foods You Should Be Eating, Yahoo! Health, 4/13
- For better immunity try eating mushrooms, Examiner, 4/17
- Easy dinner recipes: Meatless Monday options for mushroom lovers, LA Times, 4/20
- Regular consumption of Shiitake mushrooms improve immunity, Examiner, 4/20
- Mushrooms may boost immunity, Free Press Journal, 4/20
- Mushrooms Boost Immunity, Pennsylvania Ag Connection, 4/21
- Fresh Fungi: Growing, and Cooking, a Union Square Farmers’ Market Staple, New York Times Blog, 4/27
- 6 Foods That Can Make You Happier, Health, 4/27
- Nutrition Corner: Grocery store mushrooms grown in PA, Sunday Dispatch, 4/30
- This month, the Council brought another new, health and food influencers into the mushroom fold— a nutrition communications specialist and contributing editor to SELF magazine.
- Distributed information about the new University of Florida study, published in the American College of Nutrition that revealed increased immunity in people who ate a cooked shiitake mushroom every day for four weeks to health and media influencers.
- The Mushroom Channel engaged with five food service partners including Charlie Brown’s Steakhouse, BJ’s Restaurant and Brewhouse, A&W Restaurants, Rockit Burger Bar and The Capital Grille.
- Two promoted Facebook posts focused on promoting our Instagram account.
- Reached 114.5k+ people and resulted in 27.4k+ engagements and $0.04 per action
- Mushroom Channel published two blogger recipes with 699+ page views and accounted for .5 percent of all website referral traffic in April.
- Search ad words accounted for 9.08 percent of total visits in April. Top performing paid keywords included: mushroom recipes, stuffed mushrooms and vitamin D foods.
On the Horizon
- Chef Jehangir Mehta will feature the blend; serving blend sliders from a food truck at a Plate event on May 17 and demoing a blend burger at the culinary showcase within the National Restaurant Association show in Chicago on May 18.
- The nutrition newsletter for quarter two and the MHGI Bulletin that features an “Evolution of the Blend” article will be distributed at the end of May.
For more detailed social analytics download the NEW Social Analytics Report here.
The Council is preparing for the National Restaurant Association, held in Chicago in mid- by finding ways to take advantage of the thousands of chefs that will be in attendance. Council spokeschef, Jehangir Mehta, from Iron Chef, will be doing a Blend demo at the NRA’s Global Culinary Showcase as well as promoting the Blend on Chicago broadcast outlets.
The largest and most influential event held outside of the NRA is the Plate Magazine event on May 17. The Council will be well represented as Chef Mehta and Chef Maneet Chuahan of Chopt and Food Network fame, will be serving their Blend burgers with mushrooms to the chefs in attendance. After the event, the Council will have The Windy City Food Truck providing their versions of Meat-Mushroom Sliders for the attendees on their rides back to their hotels.
College & University Webinar
The Council conducted a webinar for college and university dietitians which was one of four sponsored by NACUFS, the National Association of Colleges and Universities. Elaine Magee from Stanford talked about strategies for reducing calories and included The Blend, Arlin Wasserman from Changing Tastes talked about sustainability and included The Blend and The Council ended the webinar by, of course, talking about The Blend. The webinar was one of the most attended of the entire series. NACUFS sent the attendees a flash drive with 15 Blend recipes included.
The Council has been invited to participate on two separate panels during the NACUFS national convention in July as well as to chain groups and operators from Avendra this summer.
National Accounts, Retail and Meat Processors
The Council continues to work with a number of manufacturers on a variety of Blend products. The chains that The Council works with have been demanding new Blend products from these manufacturers, and they are in various stages of production. At retail, The Council is looking at best practices around blending fresh mushrooms with raw meat for meat cases. A report will be coming by the end of May.
With a number of chains in various stages of development of new mushroom products and menu items, the largest chain re-introduced mushrooms on their menu. McDonald’s, as we pointed out last month, has now introduced its Sirloin Burger, with one of the builds featuring mushrooms. The product is an LTO, and is supported by new TV featuring the actor from the popular network series “New Girls.”
See the commercial HERE.
SCHOOL NUTRITION SUMMARY
- Mushroom Farm to School promotions took place in San Diego Unified School district. Included in the promotion were posters, salad bar clings, student taste tests and fresh mushrooms added to the salad bar. There was a farm to school promotion in Great Valley School District. A blend promotion is planned for Montgomery County School District in May.
- Council representatives met with Sodexo to discuss the Blend burger launch in 2015. Providing materials and content for launch tool kits. Council plans to meet with Aramark in May
- Met with Sunsweet to plan a meat processor summit with the Culinary Institute of America. Council received information that over 30 trucks of mushrooms have been ordered for SY 2025/2016 of commodity mushrooms from just one processor.
- Council representatives plan to attend the CIA’s Healthy Flavors Healthy Kids conference in San Antonio. The Council will sponsor a hands on kitchen session for director chefs to create mushroom blend recipes using the IQF diced mushroom blend.
- Farm to School kit is currently in development. Met with Portland Public School Farm to school coordinator for assistance.
- The newly developed IQF mushroom fact sheet was distributed in the April Mushrooms In Schools newsletter.
- All recipes on mushroomsinschools.com are currently being updated to meet changing meal pattern requirements. You can view the updated recipes and resources here.
- Updated vitamin D fact sheet and nutrition power point presentation (currently under USDA review). Working on Q2 Nutrition News About Mushrooms e-newsletter for distribution end of May.
Retail (Supermarket RD)
- Following-up with SRDs to ensure consistency in communications and regular touchpoints: sent follow-up e-blast post Oldways with CTA to visit Mushrooms At Retail and delivered personalized emails to share the news of the recent research on shiitake mushrooms and immunity. Invited SRDs from Weis, Wegmans, Redner’s, and Wakefern to join us on a mushroom farm tour in June
The Council is targeting small to mid-sized regional retailers (on both coasts) for the introduction of The Blend in grocery chain’s deli and foodservice departments.
- The Council met with Mollie Stone’s Markets the week of May 4th. They are testing various recipes including burgers and other Blend items for their meat department. The recipe testing will continue through May.
- The Council is meeting with Wakefern/ShopRite and Redner’s Warehouse Markets the week of May 18th. The Wakefern/ShopRite meeting will discuss the potential to launch The Blend. The Redner’s Warehouse Market’s meeting will discuss marketing strategies for The Blend.
The Council is co-marketing with the Beef Check-Off on a new veal mushroom burger recipe. The recipe is the Muenster Stuffed Veal and Mushroom Burger developed by the Culinary Institute of America. There will be 500,000 veal on-pack recipe labels. The Council will have presence on the VealMadeEasy site and will be included in digital and social advertising with links back to the Council’s website. The Council will feature this recipe on MushroomInfo.com with links back to their site. The Council will also have mention in photography and cooking demonstration videos. There is also a consumer sweepstakes component. The promotion will run from June 19, 2015 through September 4, 2015. This promotion will help build awareness for The Blend during the summer grilling timeframe. Click here to view the VealMadeEasy website. Retailers participating in this promotion are still in development.
The Council is in discussion with the American Egg Board for co-marketing opportunities to promote The Blend through their social media channels. Currently, they have 700,000 followers on Facebook. They also have a Pinterest, Instagram and YouTube account.
The Council is in discussion with Arla Cheese for potential co-marketing opportunities. Arla Cheese is rolling out a new line of cheeses in the dairy department during back-to-school.
The Council is in working with the National Turkey Federation for potential co-marketing opportunities during their June grilling month promotion.
The Council’s partnership with Gourmet Garden is now well underway. Featured Blend recipes are hosted on the Gourmet Garden site with a link to the Mushroom Council’s consumer site. Gourmet Garden mushroom recipes are hosted on mushroominfo.com with a link back to their site. Cross promoting recipes on each site will help drive traffic and build awareness of The Blend and Gourmet Garden’s Herbs and Spices. Click on the links below to view the recipe collection pages.
- Mushroom Council Expanding the Blend to Retail – The Packer
- Mushroom Council Looking to Extend the Blend to Retail– The Produce News
- Mushroom Council Extends the Blend to Retail – Perishable News
- Mushrooms on the Menu Feature – Produce Business
The Topline report week ending 3/22/2015 was sent to the industry on 5/05/2015; click here to access the report online.
Spotlight – Notable and Newsworthy
Total Mushrooms – 4 Weeks
- The Total U.S. dollar sales trend of +2.5% outpaced Total Produce’s growth of +2.4% by +0.1 point
- Midsouth led in dollar growth rate at +4.8%; Great Lakes and Plains were flat
- On a Market basis, Grand Rapids posted strong dollar growth of +14.6%. Chicago posted the largest decline, down -23.3%
- Total U.S. Organic dollar sales grew +22.5%, driven by California (+63.1%) which held a 15.3% share of total Organic dollars
- Volume in pounds for Total U.S. increased +3.9% and Great Lakes led the Regions with a volume increase of +15.2%. Plains volume declined -6.5%
- At the Market level, Grand Rapids showed the largest volume increase at +62.5%
- Total U.S. Organic volume grew +66.5%, while Great Lakes Organic volume increased +109.8%. Great Lakes held a 53.9% share of total Organic volume
Segment/Variety – 4 Weeks
- Total U.S. dollar sales of the White segment increased +1.6%, while Brown mushrooms exhibited growth of +2.5%
- Cremini mushrooms grew dollar sales +2.7% and Portabellas increased +2.2%
- On a Regional basis, Midsouth led the Regions in White mushroom dollar growth, up +11.2%
- Brown mushrooms posted growth in six of eight regions. Midsouth dollars declined -7.5%, while dollars in Great Lakes grew +12.9%
- White segment dollars were down in 15 of 49 Markets with results ranging from an increase of +20.0% in Raleigh/Greensboro to a decline of -37.6% in Chicago. In the Brown segment, 32 of 49 Markets posted strong dollar gains, including Grand Rapids (+34.2%), Detroit (+29.6%) and Philadelphia (+19.0%)
- Total U.S. volume in pounds for the White segment grew +1.5%, while the Brown segment saw overall volume growth of +8.6%, driven by Cremini mushrooms, up +11.6%
- In the Brown segment, Great Lakes led Regional volume growth at +56.7%. Midsouth and Southeast declined -5.7% and -9.5%, respectively
- Total Mushrooms – 52 Weeks
- The Total U.S. dollar sales trend of +2.6% lagged Total Produce’s growth trend of +3.7% by -1.1 points
- Midsouth (10.9% dollar share) led the Regions with the top dollar sales trend, up +4.8%. Northeast holds the largest dollar share (20.8%) and grew +2.9%. Great Lakes and Plains were flat
- Most Markets experienced dollar growth, notably Philadelphia (+9.7%), Raleigh/Greensboro (+7.9%) and Charlotte (+6.2%)
- Total U.S. Organic dollar sales grew +19.6%, driven by California (+59.1%) which held a 14.3% share of total Organic dollars
- Total U.S. mushroom volume in pounds grew +2.3%
- Seven of eight Regions delivered volume growth, led by California at +4.8%. Plains declined -4.2%
- Only 12 of 49 Markets saw downward volume trends, including Pittsburgh (-5.2%) and Cleveland (-4.6%)
- Organic volume increased +20.5%, driven by California (+73.0%) which held a 10.5% share of total Organic volume
Segment/Variety – 52 Weeks
- Total U.S. dollar sales for the White segment were flat, while Midsouth (+6.0%), California (+3.4%), and South Central (+3.3%) posted the only gains.
- In the Brown segment, Total U.S. dollar sales were up +4.9%. All Regions posted positive trends
- Total U.S. Brown segment dollar trends were driven by Portabella mushrooms, which hold a 32.5% dollar share of Browns and delivered sales growth of +9.7%
- At the Market level, dollar sales trends in the White segment ranged from an increase of +11.6% in Raleigh/Greensboro to a -14.7% decline in Chicago
- The Brown segment saw very strong dollar sales gains across 39 of 49 Markets, with Philadelphia leading at +16.2%. Sacramento showed the largest decline of -7.5%
- Total U.S. volume in pounds of White mushrooms was flat, but growth was seen in Midsouth (+4.9%) and California (+3.5%)
- Total U.S. volume in pounds of Brown mushrooms grew +7.6%, led by Great Lakes with growth of +13.9%
- Total U.S. Brown segment volume growth trends were driven by Cremini mushrooms which have a 69.9% volume share of Browns and delivered volume growth of +5.5%
- As with dollars, the Market level volume trends for the White segment were mixed, with 22 Markets trending upward including Charlotte (+12.6%) and Raleigh/ Greensboro (+11.9%)
- The volume trend of Brown mushrooms fared better, with only seven markets trending downward. Sacramento (-7.4%) and Buffalo/Rochester (-6.8%) posted the largest losses.
- Strong volume growth in the Brown segment occurred in these Markets: Philadelphia (+16.2%), Detroit (+15.0%) and Grand Rapids (+10.8%)