Volume 16 Part 1 Article 92
Title: Consumption of Edible Mushrooms in Developing Countries: The Case of Mexico
Authors: Y. Mayett, D. Martínez-Carrera, M. Sánchez, A. Macías, S. Mora and A. Estrada
Major efforts in mushroom cultivation have focused on technological developments and yield. However, the success of commercial mushroom cultivation also depends on a thorough understanding of consumer trends worldwide. This is true for developing countries where consumer preferences and perceptions for edible mushrooms are not yet clear. During 2000-03, we carried out a study to understand the pattern of mushroom consumption in central Mexico, where most mushrooms are produced and marketed. Data derived from structured interviews of urban consumers were statistically analyzed according to the different variables considered. About one-half (49%) of urban consumers bought mushrooms (fresh/canned Agaricus, Pleurotus and Lentinula), independent of their social status. There were different marketing strategies to deal with mushroom quality and price according to long channels of distribution. Preferences and perceptions of Mexican consumers depended on their social level. Mushroom prices were viewed as very or moderately expensive, which is significant considering a 64% decrease in the minimum wage occurred from 1940 to 2002. Mushrooms were markedly more expensive than foods widely consumed. The variation of mushroom prices between cities, regions and places of purchase was a major factor influencing consumption. A national strategy considering social levels and regions is proposed in an effort to increase mushroom consumption in Mexico.Please login to download the PDF for this proceeding.