Truffles are the most expensive food in the world. As if they weren’t already expensive enough, unusually hot and dry weather in Italy has sent prices soaring.
In 2016, there was an abundance of the precious fungi, and prices plunged, but a hot summer followed by a dry autumn this year have made for a dramatically smaller harvest this season. All this has led to that prices have doubled, reaching more than $3,200 per pound.
Truffle hunters say that in some parts of the country, supply is down as much as 90 percent. In addition to skyrocketing prices, there are concerns that this year’s truffle yield won’t be enough to meet demand, and the ingredient could be impossible for chefs to get their hands on come November.
The higher prices also have yet to trickle down to derivative products like truffle butter or infused oils, meaning there should still be plenty of truffle flavor to go around this fall and winter. Fantasies of Christmas stockings overflowing with white truffles may have to wait till next year to be fulfilled, however.