Industry Update ~  Issue 48 ~  April 2020
Industry Update is a monthly e-newsletter that forms part of the 
Industry  Communication project. I f you think we have missed anything, or you have any feedback on the articles,  we would be more than happy to hear from you.
A changed approach to mushroom marketing

The marketing of Australian Mushrooms through to June 2020, has been revised in lightof COVID-19, with a changed emphasis and direction now in place, taking into account the changed behaviour and media consumption of consumers.

Advice has been provided to industry  through a separate Alert and a summary document - A changed approach to mushroom marketing - is also available for download.
COVID-19 links and resources

With COVID-19 dominating the news, one of the most significant risks is information overload, so the question is where to start. The AMGA has taken the initiative in circulating industry-relevant information over the past few weeks. In addition to these materials, there is a range of other relevant items that may apply to your business.

The website contains links to a range of very detailed information including COVID-19 Guides, webinars, tips, industry-specific information (including the AMGA COVID-10 procedures: Mushroom farms guide, and information on the safety of horticultural produce. 

There is also up-to-date Australian border control information by state and territory,  labour updates and resources, financial and business assistance. For anyone unsure about the available information, the site is a great place to start and is updated regularly.

The FarmHub website, maintained by the National Farmers' Federation
has a Knowledge Centre with COVID-19 information covering a Workplace Guide, Key Information, Border Control Information and Assistance and Support. The site allows users to use filters to find an article by category.
Safework Australia has compiled a range of information for employers, workers and small business on work health and safety and COVID-19.  A useful source of information is the Business Resource Kit  which has checklists, signage, posters and infographics available for download and use. On the Business Resource Kit page readers can also sign up to be notified about updates to Safe Work Australia's COVID-19 information.

In terms of the services provided to industry, Freshcare has indicated that it does not expect any significant disruption during the COVID-19 pandemic. The website offers useful downloads for use including a Factsheet - Food safety & quality incident management -additional measures during adverse events  and a Form - Food Safety & Quality Form: F10Food Safety Instructions Insert - Health Declaration (COVID-19)
Readers can also sign up to stay updated and receive the Freshcare eNews.

PMA Australia + New Zealand has a range of resources available for use covering all aspects of the COVID-19 situation.  The information includes Fresh Produce Guidelines; sanitation resources; a Workplace Checklist; 7 Steps to Reduce Transmission; and Mental Health Resources. To stay informed, readers can subscribe to receive the latest news and updates.

The ARC Training Centre for Food Safety in the Fresh Produce Industry has produced a guide that covers explicitly fresh produce processing facilities.   The website also contains links to other articles of interest, including the washing of produce and incident management resources.

The Harvest to Home website, which features retail data gathered through Nielsen, now includes information on the preliminary impacts on fresh produce by COVID-19. The information includes the following document, which highlights the growth in retail sales - Analysis: COVID19 Fresh Produce Update.

Previous Edition - COVID-19  

A range of useful resources and links on COVID-19 were included in the March edition of this newsletter.  These resources include: 
  • Freshcare in focus. This newsletter includes the following: Fact Sheet - Food safety & quality incident management - additional measures during adverse events and Food Safety & Quality Form: F10 Food Safety Instructions Insert - Health Declaration (COVID-19).

Strategic Investment Advisory Panel

The Mushroom SIAP will meet in the week commencing 1 June 2020 to advise Hort Innovation on the investment recommendations contained in the DRAFT Mushroom Investment Plan 2020-2021. 

On completion of the SIAP meeting, a public version of the DRAFT Mushroom Investment Plan will be made available on the Hort Innovation website for wider communication.  

Hort Innovation in collaboration with AMGA are currently securing inputs into the creation of the DRAFT Mushroom Investment Plan 2020-21. Any mushroom growers who would like to provide input are encouraged to contact the Hort Innovation Industry Strategic Partner, Mark Spees on 0439 574 173 or

To stay up to date with SIAP activities, please use this  LINK   to view a full list of meeting summaries.  

New Research Project

Market research company Fifty-Five Five are undertaking a new project - Mushrooms attitudinal research - on behalf of industry. The project, which concludes on 31 May, is directed at increasing the understanding of consumer behaviour and attitudes towards mushrooms.

AMGA Conference Cancelled

The 2020 Australian Mushroom Growers' Association conference - Growing the future, together - has been cancelled. the conference has now been re-scheduled for 2021. Further details will be provided as the become available.

Australian Mushrooms Journal

If you haven't yet read the latest edition of the Australian Mushrooms Journal, then the time to download is NOW. You can also read the Flipbook version HERE.
A snapshot of mushroom news

Mushrooms in the News is a quick snapshot of news relevant to mushrooms. It could be a great recipe, a healthy reference, some research findings or some mushroom industry coverage. When we find it we will post it to the site and include it in the Monthly Update. If you have any comments or find anything that has been missed, please email and let us know.

Sunscreen made from mushroom waste may help create sustainable industry, researchers sayA recent report on ABC has highlighted promising Adelaide-based research that is looking at ways to turn mushroom waste into items like sunscreen, skincare products and outdoor furniture coating. Mushrooms SA general manager Nick Femia said his business produced up to 200 tonnes of waste in the form of mushroom stalks annually, and putting this waste to work could save tens of thousands of dollars a year. The article claims scientists from the University of Adelaide have created a transparent film from the stalks that can block UV radiation and can be used in skincare products, or as a coating for outdoor furniture or textiles, or made water-repellent. Mr Femia said he was keen to explore using the film as a replacement for plastic wrap on pre-pack mushrooms.

Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) is investigating listeria cases linked to imported mushrooms. Genome sequencing has identified that the listeria monocytogenes patients in Australia are related to an outbreak traced to imported mushrooms that have also killed four in the United States. FSANZ said there had been six identified infections in Australia, with four having been exposed in Australia and two while travelling overseas. The detections have resulted in Choi's Mushrooms recalling Green Co. Enoki Mushrooms in 200-gram and 300-gram packages, imported from South Korea with the date markings: April 22, May 5, May 12, May 19 and May 26, 2020.

Former Mittagong Mushrooms owner inspired others to live life to the fullest The most recent Australian Mushrooms Journal carried a small article on the passing of former Mittagong Mushrooms owner, Brian Pratley. An article in the Southern Highland news contains additional information and is linked here for the interest of industry members.

Coronavirus tips: Experts say these supplements, foods may help keep immune system humming Everyone has been advised to wash their hands and keep surfaces clean, but experts are also indicating that boosting your immune system is another way to stay healthy. This article says the best defence is to get vitamins and minerals through food and goes on to include mushrooms as one of the featured foods, telling readers about vitamin D and beta-glucans in mushrooms. According to the writer, mushrooms have been shown to help balance the immune system and provide extra support.

Additional links of interest: 

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