the truffle market
Portugal

MARKET OVERVIEW

1.1 Definition and scope of study

The truffle is the name given to certain species of fungi that are found in the soil and grow in symbiosis with the roots of several plants. A single fungus can give life to different truffles. There are two main categories of truffles on the market :

  • The black truffle or Perigord truffle found in limestone soils, under truffle trees from 1 to 15 cm deep.
  • The white truffle the most popular and expensive variety on the market, found mainly in Italy and Croatia.

The truffle market is made up of a multitude of small players including farmers harvesting and distributing their produce . Much rarer than the black truffle, because it cannot be cultivated but grows spontaneously in specific regions, the white truffle is extremely delicate and can keep its aroma and taste for a week. Some actors are mobilizing to continue the modernization of the sector and find the support of the public authorities.

In Portugal, white truffles come directly from Piedmontese suppliers or sometimes from intermediaries such as Rungis, the Parisian supply market. Few restaurants dare to invest in this product, but there are a growing audience who doesn't refrain from consuming them The black truffle grows in soils with a high pH value (greater than 7.5), which is detrimental to truffle cultivation in Portugal where the soils are mainly acidic. For farmers, it is therefore necessary to correct the pH.

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