Meet our local supplier, Anton Den Engelse of Woodfruits, Corpusty. Established in 2002, Woodfruits is a producer of shiitake mushrooms and supplies C T Baker Budgens of Holt.
Grown over a period of three months in a strictly controlled environment, Woodfruits’ shiitake mushrooms are cultivated in a grow room at 24-27 degrees Celsius for 12 weeks. At this stage in the mushrooms’ development, mushroom spawn is grown in bags of sterilised sawdust. The spawn expands and colonises before it’s transferred to a high humidity fruiting room, which is maintained at around 17 degrees Celsius. The cooler conditions in this room encourage the mushrooms to fully develop in just 10 days.
Woodfruits prides itself on its entirely sustainable production methods. The sawdust used in the initial stages of the mushrooms’ growth is sourced from the by-product of a sawmill, whilst its grow rooms are housed within specially converted shipping containers. The timbers used for the floorboards and framework within these containers are reclaimed from the wooden reels used for the laying of cable at Weybourne windfarm.
The company uses energy from renewable sources. The heat is provided by a bio mass heater fuelled by cord wood, which allows them to convert the used sawdust blocks into heat after they have been harvested. The heat generated from this biomass heater travels through an underground pipe, which in turn maintains the temperature of the grow room and fruiting room. Electricity is provided by a solar array and a battery storage system. Rain water is harvested and used where suitable. Any excess mushrooms produced are converted into dried products, meaning that the company operates with minimal wastage throughout.