• International Journal of Technology (IJTech)
  • Vol 11, No 3 (2020)

Value Chain Analysis of Indian Edible Mushroom

C Ganeshkumar, M Prabhu, Sai Prahlada Reddy, Arokiaraj David

Corresponding email: gcganeshkumar@gmail.com

Cite this article as:
Ganeshkumar, C., Prabhu, M., Reddy, S.P., David, A., 2020. Value Chain Analysis of Indian Edible Mushroom. International Journal of Technology. Volume 11(3), pp. 599-607

C Ganeshkumar Assistant Professor, Indian Institute of Plantation Management, Bangalore, India and Corresponding author
M Prabhu Assistant Professor, Department of Business Administration, Lebanese French University, Erbil, Kurdistan Region, Iraq
Sai Prahlada Reddy Agribusiness and Plantation Management, Indian Institute of Plantation Management, Bangalore, India
Arokiaraj David Assistant Professor, Jain University, Bangalore, India
Email to Corresponding Author


The purpose of this study is to examine the value chain analysis of, consumers' awareness level of, and buying motives toward mushroom products. The primary data were collected through face-to-face interviews and by using a questionnaire filled out by 70 consumers from various major mushroom production districts, selected by non-random sampling. Secondary data were collected from various sources. Based on the data analysis, it was found that around 73% of consumers  preferred to buy their mushroom products in the supermarket, and 71% of consumers responded that factors other than the shape, color, and size of mushrooms motivated them to buy them. The research concludes that urban consumers were well aware of the nutrition value of mushrooms, but their consumption level was very low compared to non-vegetarians urban consumer in the studied area. Nearly 30% of respondents believed a myth about mushrooms having a mold and were prepared from compost, which causes a bad smell. It was found that that while producers put forth more effort and energy than other actors into the mushroom value chain they received less revenue and profit than wholesalers and retailers. Therefore, policy makers should develop new norms to remove barriers and others issues to safeguard mushroom producers for sustainable growth of the mushroom sector in India. In the future, there will be an increase in the consumption of processed foods. Hence, food companies have to concentrate on mushroom processing and fresh mushroom production.

Mushrooms; Value chain analysis; Buying motives


Mushrooms are fungal growth that typically take the form of a domed cap on a stalk with gills on the underside of the cap. The cultivation of mushrooms is an emerging industry in many developing countries, such as China, South Africa, Niger, Uganda, Rwanda, and Kenya. Today China is leading mushroom producers in the world both in edible and non-edible types of mushrooms. It accounts for 70% of world mushroom production, and mushrooms are the sixth-most economically important crop for their country’s revenue generation. At present, 96% of global mushroom production is done by Europeans, Americans, and East Asian countries. Globally, there is a huge demand for mushrooms, which requires more mushroom cultivation. They are mainly cultivated in hilly regions as they require a low temperature to grow (Zhang, 2019). However, technological advancement in modern mushroom cultivation has made it possible to cultivate mushrooms year-round under certain environmental conditions. In the last decade, large numbers of commercials units have been built by entrepreneurs and farmers throughout the India for the production of button mushrooms. However, there are some practical difficulties, such as 90% of moisture content in mushrooms quickly vanishing and surprising deterioration immediately after harvest. As they are highly perishable, fresh mushrooms are processed to extend their shelf-life (Berawi, 2019). During the off-season it is an appropriate use of post-harvest technology to process surplus mushrooms into novel value-added products that will add product value.

In spite of all the major constraints faced by the mushroom industry, the current Indian scenario is quite encouraging, with an overall increase in production of five to six times. However, this is very small quantity if the vast market potential of this large country is to be fully exploited. The mushroom industry has a bright future in India, chiefly because of a large quantity of agro-by-products and agro-waste generated as well as the availability of a large and cheap labor force (Yusuf and Zava, 2019). The table below shows the total area of mushroom cultivated in India and production statistics in metric tons.


Table 1 Area and production of mushrooms in India




















Noted: The area is in thousand ha; production is in thousand mt

Source: National Horticulture Board, 2018-2019

In india there are five types of mushrooms produced: white button mushrooms, oyster mushrooms, paddy straw mushrooms, shitake mushrooms, and milky mushrooms. Out of these, the main three types—white button, oyster, and milky mushrooms—are very popular and comprise 90% of production in india. India consumes 1000 tons of mushrooms per year. An increase in purchasing power has changed the taste and preference of consumers, which help the mushroom market growth (Wakchaure et al., 2011a). Mushrooms are a high-value niche product with great potential to contribute to poverty reduction by properly utilizing agricultural wastes (Yu et al., 2009). Properly disposed waste materials can be converted into compost for the betterment of efficient agricultural processes (Sharma et al., 1997). Mushroom producers had difficulties getting compost due to limited markets available in their locality (Sudhakar et al., 2017). Although it is inexpensive to produce mushrooms in major production areas, the farmers and mushroom companies have struggled to identify the product value to fulfill the needs and wants of consumers (Karthick and Hamsalakshmi, 2017).


In India, around 40 g per capita of mushrooms are consumed, whereas in the USA, Australian, and Canada people consume 2-3 kg per capita. In India mushrooms, their nutritional benefits and importance are not known among the public. Many mushroom varieties are not available in local markets. Around 73% of consumers preferred to only buy their mushroom products in the supermarket. Seventy-one percent of consumers responded that factors apart from the shape, color, and size of mushrooms motivated them to buy mushrooms. The consumers were asked about where they preferred to eat mushrooms; 63% liked to eat in hotels and restaurants. Around 33% of consumers consumed mushrooms every 2 to 4 months, and 31% consumed them once in a month. The majority of consumers preferred to have mushroom soup when compared to other value-added mushroom dishes. Companies like ITC have to create more mushroom awareness campaigns and to increase the productivity of mushrooms. Domestic marketing does not pose a problem at present because only small quantities of mushrooms are being traded. As production develops, marketing promotion measures will need to be undertaken to bolster demand. In the future, there will be an increase in the consumption of processed foods. So, food companies have to concentrate on mushroom processing and fresh mushrooms. Therefore, efforts should be made to increase production and to solve future marketing problems through right kind and effective government rules and regulation in India.


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