New York City – How do you build a better burger? Through its popular website and magazine, Food Network is showing its audience just that with The Blend™ – the culinary technique of mixing finely chopped mushrooms and ground meat to make meals more delicious, nutritious, and sustainable.
Continuing the initiative established in 2021, the Mushroom Council is again educating home cooks and professionals about the benefits of The Blend™ and inviting Food Network Magazine and FoodNetwork.com audiences to give it a try in their kitchens for a chance to win their share of $20,000 in prizes.
Kicking off this month and continuing through September, the multi-media program is one of the largest partnerships the Mushroom Council has ever embarked upon. Last year’s inaugural collaboration earned more than 90 million impressions and received more than 1,300 Blended Burger recipe entries in its annual contest.
This collaboration is a strategic evolution for the Mushroom Council and its Blended Burger Project, which began more than 10 years ago by first reaching influential professional chefs with the Culinary Institute of America and the James Beard Foundation. Today, the effort engages home cooks, showing them how to incorporate mushrooms into their favorite everyday meals.
“This is such an incredible opportunity to further increase awareness for The Blend,” said Anne-Marie Roerink, principal of 210 Analytics and author of comprehensive industry insights analyses like “The Power of Meat” and “The Power of Produce.” “The Power of Meat 2022 study found that about one in six people eat a flexitarian diet, meaning these people still want to eat meat and poultry, but a little less of it, and mushroom-blended items are the perfect answer for that. The timing couldn’t be better to give consumers and professionals another reason to flex their interest in blending.”
The Blended Burger Project in 2022 through Food Network Magazine and FoodNetwork.com will reach mass consumer and professional audiences with a variety of activities.
- The Blended Burger Recipe Contest for consumers and foodservice, encouraging people nationwide to enter their own Blended Burger recipe at //FoodNetwork.com/blendedburgercontest. The contest features two tracks: one for home cooks and one for professional chefs, recipe developers, or caterers. Each category will award $10,000 to the top recipe entry, and the winning recipes will be featured in the November issue of Food Network Magazine.
- Blended Burger Contest Featured in May/June issue of Food Network Magazine. Food Network Magazine will feature an eye-catching full-page contest announcement that shows how to make The Blend™ and invites readers to make their own creation and enter the contest.
- The Blend™ Recipe Booklet. The Food Network Magazine editorial team – working closely with Food Network Kitchen’s culinary team – have custom-created a series of mushroom and meat blend recipes that demonstrate applications for The Blend™ in burgers and beyond. This collection of on-trend recipes includes new twists on classics like mushroom cheeseburger mac and cheese and mushroom-beef taco salad as well as globally inspired mushroom-lamb kofta and mushroom-beef picadillo. The recipes are collected into a special recipe pull-out booklet that have been inserted into the May/June issue of Food Network magazine. It will also live online at FoodNetwork.com.
- “How to Blend” video from celebrity chef Kardea Brown, star of the Food Network program “Delicious Miss Brown.” Kardea Brown partnered with Mushroom Council as celebrity spokesperson for The Blend™ and Blended Burgers last year, and enthusiastically joins in the effort again in 2022. This year, Brown shares her new Blended Burger recipe— “Kardea Brown’s Mushroom-Beef Smash Burgers”—which will be featured on FoodNetwork.com as well as on its Facebook and Instagram channels and on Brown’s own Instagram.
- Digital Ads appearing on FoodNetwork.com and social media.
About the Mushroom Council:
The Mushroom Council is composed of fresh market producers and importers who average more than 500,000 pounds of mushrooms produced or imported annually. The mushroom program is authorized by the Mushroom Promotion, Research and Consumer Information Act of 1990 and is administered by the Mushroom Council under the supervision of the Agricultural Marketing Service. Research and promotion programs help to expand, maintain and develop markets for individual agricultural commodities in the United States and abroad. These industry self-help programs are requested and funded by the industry groups that they serve. For more information, visit mushroomcouncil.com