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Veg of the month: chestnut mushrooms

Veg of the month: chestnut mushrooms

Chestnut mushrooms are healthy on the plate and gentle on the planet.

Immune boost Mushrooms are a great source of the antioxidant selenium. Selenium protects the body’s cells from damage that might lead to chronic diseases and help to strengthen the immune system as well.

How they grow Mushroom growing is not a precise science; atmospheric changes within the growing cycle will affect how the mushrooms grow. The indoor growing houses need to be kept at a consistent 26°C to encourage the mushrooms to grow to the top of the growing trays. Once they’re covering the top of the trays the temperature then reduced to shock the mushroom into thinking it’s near the end of its life cycle and as a result, produce the edible fruit. The growth of the mushroom from then on is very quick; mushrooms will double in size every 24 hours. The mushrooms are hand harvested and chilled within one hour. Each batch will last for 4 weeks, producing 3 different crops or “flushes”.

Circle of life Mushrooms feed on dead organic matter so growers use compost to cultivate mushrooms rather than soil. The mushroom industry is a huge recycler of agricultural waste material. Chelbury, based in Cheltenham, where we source our mushrooms, donate their “spent” organic compost to local farmers who spread it on their land as fertilising mulch. After it has been used to grow mushrooms it is very rich in nutrients. As well as feeding the soil, it helps maintain it by improving soil structure, helping retain moisture and fending off pesky weeds.

Do we deliver to you?

We deliver to Bristol, Bath, Chew Valley, Weston-Super-Mare, Frome and plenty of places in-between!