28 May 1999

Mushroom opportunity

NEW mushroom growers including farmers keen to diversify are being sought by a North Yorks company.

Wilgro Mushrooms, of Wath, near Ripon, needs a further 12-20 growers to produce an extra 30,000lbs-40,000lbs of mushrooms on contract.

The company already supplies Tesco and Netto and will soon have three more supermarket outlets on its books. Managing director John Smith says setting up a typical three-tunnel starter unit covering about 5000sq ft of land costs about £30,000.

"Once the farmer is ready to go, we will train him until he has all the necessary expertise. When hes in production, we enter into a three-year contract whereby we agree to take all of his product, on a fixed price which is reviewed quarterly."

Mr Smith said that successful growers should be able to make between £12,000-£24,000 a year. &#42