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The Ambitions of a Pig: National Truffle Day

Quote for Today: The pig is not just pork chops and bacon and ham to us. The pig is a co-laborer in this great land-healing ministry. Joel Salatin

National Truffle Day

National Truffle Day, Future Truffles Forager, Roadtrips R Us, Travel & Food Blog

Future Truffles Forager

Pigs eat them, dogs sniff them, and people pay astronomical prices for them, why?  Chef TJ

National Truffle Day, Roadtrips R Us, Travel & Food Blog

Truffles

Today’s Food Holiday is National Truffle Day. In Hong Kong, real estate tycoon, Sir Gordon Wu and his wife paid $167,787 (U.S.) for a gigantic white Alba Truffle weighing in at 1.5 kg. It was the most expensive truffle ever sold at the time.  However, one year later, a casino magnate Stanley Ho purchased a white truffle from Tuscany for $330,000 at an annual auction in Hong Kong. It was the record price paid for a single white truffle (December 2007).

In December 2014, a White Alba’s Truffle weighing in at 4.16 pounds or 1.89 kilos was unearthed in the Umbrian region of Italy by the Balestra Family of Sabatino. It was auctioned at Sotheby’s in New York. While some had expected it to sell for $1 million, it was sold for $61,000 to a Taiwanese buyer. Wikipedia

Why are truffles in such demand?

Research shows that truffles were plentiful in the late 19th and early 20th century and commonly used.  Since then, deforestation, war, and disease reduced the truffle harvest to less than 5 percent of what was available before World War I.  The people who forage truffles for a living are reluctant to mass produce because of the price they are getting today.

Truffles Foraging Pig, Roadtrips R Us, Travel & Food Blog

Truffles Foraging Pig

Supply and demand is a powerful thing.  If you can get between $1,000 and $2200 per pound, why would you mass produce for a fraction of the reward?  Personally, I have never purchased a truffle and we won’t go into the reasons here. However, I’ve had the pleasure of tasting French Truffles and their byproducts.  If any of these delicious morsels were available in my area, you would have to call me Mr. Forager with Arnold Ziffel as my sidekick.

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