Volume 10 Part 2 Article 56: On the Formation of the Aroma of Some Northern Mushrooms

Volume 10 Part 2 Article 56
Year 1979
Title: On the Formation of the Aroma of Some Northern Mushrooms
Author: H. Pyysalo


The wild mushrooms abounding in the northern countries constitute a valuable natural resource, which at the present is scarcely utilized. The yearly yield of wild mushrooms varies greatly. The average yield of mushrooms in Finland is estimated to be 1.5 x 109 kg per year and under favourable weather conditions the yield may rise as high as 5.0 x 109 kg.

About 2000 species of mushrooms grow in Finland and about 200 of them have food value.

Although Finland, like many other northern countries, is rich in wild mushrooms, only one or two parts in a thousand is collected. The low utilization is caused in part by the difficulties in collecting and handling the mushrooms. Mushrooms foul quickly and their flavour easily deteriorates during processing and storage.

The special aroma of mushrooms constitues an essential part of their appeal.

Many mushroom species possess an odour that can be generally described as “mushroom-like”. Other species have, in addition, distinct aromas with which they uniquely flavour foodstuffs.

In this work volatile compounds in fresh mushrooms Cantharellus cibarius, Gyromitra esculenta, Boletus edulis, Lactarius trivialis, Lactarius torminosus, Agaricus bisporus, Lactarius rufus and in cooked Cantharellus cibarius were identified and their aroma properties measured with the specific aim to determine which compounds are responsible for the attractive aroma of fresh and cooked mushrooms.

This paper summarizes detailed works on this field (Pyysalo, 1976; Pyysalo and Suihko, 1976; Pyysalo and Niskanen, 1977) as well as some compounds, which have not been reported to exist in mushrooms, are now introduced.

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