KENNETT SQUARE, Pa. — On behalf of Gov. Tom Wolf, state Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding joined industry leaders to celebrate Pennsylvania’s nation-leading mushroom industry at the 32nd annual Mushroom Festival in Chester County.
“Pennsylvania’s mushroom industry reflects the quality of Pennsylvania agriculture and its importance to our economy,” Redding said. “It’s truly remarkable the capacity of this region to turn out a high-quality product at volumes that are enough to satisfy nearly two-thirds of the nation’s demand. The growers of this region are what make Kennett Square the ‘Mushroom Capital of the World.’”
According to the most recent data released last month by the National Agricultural Statistics Service, Pennsylvania remains first in the nation for the production of white, or Agaricus, mushrooms, producing 577.6 million pounds worth nearly $560 million in the 2016-17 growing season. Pennsylvania produced more than 64 percent of the total volume of mushrooms sold in the U.S., with California a distant second at 11 percent.
In Chester County alone, 50 growers produced 405 million pounds of mushrooms, valued at $391 million.
Redding also noted that the industry employs an estimated 10,000 people statewide.
In recognition of the industry’s value to Pennsylvania’s economy, Gov. Wolf declared September to be Mushroom Month in Pennsylvania. Secretary Redding presented a proclamation from the Governor to the American Mushroom Institute and member growers at a reception kicking off the festival. Redding later rode in the festival parade.
The Pennsylvania-based American Mushroom Institute’s annual Mushroom Festival draws 100,000 guests to Kennett Square to celebrate the industry’s positive impact to the region’s economy.
To learn more about the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture’s work to support a vibrant, competitive agriculture industry, visit agriculture.pa.gov.
— Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture