Climate change doesn’t cease to make its effects visible everywhere in the world, but some people seem to find the benefits in these phenomena. Due to serious weather changes, rare black truffles can now grow without problem in Great Britain. These gourmand treats usually require a warmer and drier climate, and value more than £2,000 per kilogram.
Researchers made Perigord black truffles grow in the UK
These black truffles originate in the Mediterranean area, and thrive in the south of France and the north of Italy and Spain. However, a team of researchers from Cambridge and Sterling Universities managed to bring them to Great Britain as well. They collaborated with Mycorrhizal Systems Ltd, a company which specialized in truffle genetics, and discovered they were able to grow the plant in Wales.
They planted a Mediterranean oak whose roots contained spores of the popular black truffles, in Monmouthshire, Wales. In March, a truffle-sniffing dog dug the plants, which were identified as Perigord black truffles, a highly expensive breed which can cost as much as £1,700 per kilogram. Now, researchers think they might be able to harvest the truffles in other places in Great Britain, at the same altitude.
Truffle harvesting is still a difficult process
Climate change had a huge impact on truffle production in Europe. The conditions became less friendly for the plant to grow, which led to the overwhelming increase of its prices. Therefore, researchers have kept looking for possible new environments where black truffles can grow.
“This is one of the best flavored truffle species in the world and the potential for industry is huge,” researchers say.
This latest discovery is major, as the Perigord breed is one of the most appreciated in the world. Therefore, more places where it can grow is always good news. In fact, researchers didn’t expect it to thrive in the UK. Their initial purpose was to look at its survival capabilities.
However, there is one downside to this affair. The process of growth is still difficult, and many farmers might not want to take the risk. Even if the species has been cultivated by humans for such a long time, breeders don’t know much about how it grows and how it interacts with its host-tree.
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