Rethinking a sustainable truffle sector under global crises


  • Ulf Büntgen
  • Tomáš Čejka
  • Mirek Trnka
  • Paul W. Thomas



economic crises, biodiversity, irrigation systems, gourmet food, COVID-19, rural economies, green-agriculture, reforestation, global pandemic


Global climate change is the main threat for the emerging truffle sector, which already extends across seven key regions in the Americas, Europe, South Africa and Australasia. At the same time, the potential effects of financial crises and global pandemics have not yet been considered in most risk assessments. Here we describe the direct and indirect impacts of the actual coronavirus pandemic on the rising truffle sector. We discuss how COVID-19 affects small family businesses and international enterprises, and if the current harvest decline will have ecological long-term benefits. Furthermore, we question extant cultivation practices, irrigation techniques and trade systems to prepare for a more equitable and sustainable future of the global truffle industry. Despite various foci on one of the most expensive gourmet foods and its associated agroforestry, we expect our reflections to be valuable for many other high-value crops, and a green agriculture in general.




How to Cite

Büntgen, U., Čejka, T., Trnka, M., & Thomas, P. W. (2021). Rethinking a sustainable truffle sector under global crises. ERDKUNDE, 75(4), 311–314.



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