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Cultivating Success: Visit to Walsh Mushrooms in Ireland (art 4 of 5)

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Rich mushroom history of Ireland started in the late 1970s, as UMDIS agency wrote before. One of the most notable person in mushroom industry of Ireland of those years is Mr Walsh, the owner of Walsh Mushrooms. Now his son Alan plays a large role in the company.

The growing farms was mostly built and equipped by JF McKenna, Irish supplier of turn-key solutions.Walsh Mushroom is one of Ireland’s largest and most successful mushroom cultivation facilities. What started humbly with 24 growing rooms and have expanded over the years to an impressive 42 growing rooms. Mushrooms are being provided both to local and international markets.

  • Today, approximately 90% of the mushrooms produced in Ireland are exported to the United Kingdom. With a population of over six million, Ireland consumes only 10% of the locally grown mushrooms, highlighting the significance of the export market. This export-oriented approach has played a crucial role in the expansion of Ireland’s mushroom industry, – tells UMDIS Mike Flanagan, Farm Director at Walsh Mushrooms.

Irish mushroom producers have developed strong partnership with various supermarkets, a trend seen across the Irish mushroom industry that most of mushrooms (90% or so) the farms sell through the supermarkets. The rest to food service.

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During the summer, demand for brown mushrooms tends to decrease as consumers prefer lighter foods. However, as autumn approaches and festivities like Christmas and New Year come closer, demand surges.

The labour costs as well as compost and number of other costs in Ireland are significantly higher, making it challenging for Irish mushroom farmers to compete with their continental European counterparts as Polish producers. However, they manage to do it perfectly.

The cost of Irish compost is higher than that in other countries. But the quality is good. According to Walsh Mushrooms as well as other producers we talked, in Ireland it very rarely happens that the quality of compost is not good, and the producers experience some problems from the compost side.

Walsh Mushrooms is looking to improve sustainable solutions – renewable electricity, biomass heating and reducing Carbon Footprint.

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