Experts predict that the mushroom season this autumn will be below the average of the last 17 years

Catalonia’s Forest Technology Centre has cited that the lack of rain, high temperatures and the wind have slowed down the growth of mushrooms in the Pyrenees. The centre’s mathematical models expect the yields to be lower than in previous years and long term forecasts predict a lack of rain in autumn, which will also cause the yield of mushrooms to be less than average.

CNA / David Tuxworth

August 27, 2012 11:30 PM

Barcelona (ACN).- Mushrooms are extremely popular in Catalan cuisine and many people go to the woods to pick them as a hobby. However, this year the mushroom season will probably be quite poor. Catalonia’s Forest Technology Centre reveals that the mushroom season should have already started in some areas of Catalonia, especially the Pyrenees. According to experts, the high temperatures of the past weeks, low amounts of rain and the wind have paralysed the growth of the mushrooms. Long term forecasts predict less rain in autumn, causing the mushroom season to be less than the average of the past 17 years. The average yield is expected to be 20 to 40 kilograms per hectare, less than in 2011 when 45 kilos per hectare was collected.

Mushroom picking is very popular in Catalonia and features as a part of its seasonal and gastronomic culture. The many varieties of mushroom characterise the traditional local festivals, tasting fairs and events centred on the fungi at this time of year and throughout autumn. Restaurants and markets also capitalise on the popularity and seasonal nature of the mushrooms where they are often featured. Unfortunately, this autumn’s season is expected to be disappointing in terms of yield due to unfavourable weather conditions.

Juan Martínez de Aragón, from Catalonia’s Forest Technology Centre, explained that the yield estimates are averages calculated using mathematical models, mycological samples taken from Catalan forests and meteorological information from the sites collected over the past 17 years. The models used take into account the variation in yield that exists in different types of woods and the water that will be available during the mushroom season from July to November. Measuring the availability of water is a key factor in achieving an accurate result, so the studies use long term weather forecasts when calculating the predictions for the season. These long-term forecasts indicate that it will probably rain less than usual during next autumn.