In Italy, a white truffle sold for 120 000 euros


Orange with AFP-Services, published on Sunday, November 10, 2019 at 19:15

The acquisition was made during the traditional festival of Alba.

The white truffle is a rare and luxurious dish. This new sale is the proof.

The white truffle of a little over 1 kg was auctioned 120,000 euros, or about 120 euros per gram, Sunday, at the 20th World Auction held in Alba, near Turin.

And a special device was organized for the occasion. The sale took place in connection with Moscow, Singapore and Hong Kong where the purchaser was, whose identity was not revealed.

The price of this exceptional truffle does not correspond to the market price which is currently around 375 euros per 100 grams in the market of Alba, which serves as a national reference, according to Coldiretti, the main Italian agricultural organization.

A traditional festival

Every year for 88 years, the city of Alba, in Piedmont, hosts for nearly two months a large white truffle fair during which the auction takes place.The white truffle of Alba, which is harvested from September 21 to January 31, is extremely famous.

The sale, which has traditionally been donated to works, will be used this year to raise funds for the Hong Kong Mother's Choice Institute, which helps children without families and mothers in need, and at the center Dmitry Rogachev from Moscow, specializing in research on childhood cancers.

"The price of white truffles has increased by 50% in one month from 250 euros to 375 euros per 100 g." between early October and early November, says the Coldiretti. Prices are "far from the highest in recent years, 500 euros in 2012 and 450 euros in 2017 for 100 grams for parts weighing an average of 20 grams," says the organization.

Delicate storage

Tuber magnatum Pico, a learned name for white truffle, grows in soils that must remain cool and moist in the germination phase as well as in the ripening phase. A fungus living underground, it consists of a high percentage of water and minerals absorbed by the soil thanks to the roots of the tree with which it lives in symbiosis. It grows near the roots of pine, holm oak, cork oak and oak from which it derives its characteristics (color, taste and smell).

In Italy, it is found in particular in Piedmont, Marche, Tuscany and Umbria (northern and central regions) but also further south in Lazio and Calabria. According to the Coldiretti, more than 100 000 official collectors are involved in the supply of white truffle shops, restaurants and businesses for an estimated turnover of about 500 million euros, whether the fresh product, preserved or transformed.

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