home  › Business and economy

The truffles that took over the White House

by Enrico Netti

The company is operational in Dubai, Shanghai, and the United States with its five branches. These are the key markets for Urbani Tartufi, the family-owned business that is now in its sixth generation. Its long history is tied to the precious tuber: the company markets nearly two thirds of the worlds truffles, and its products have even won over the chefs at the White House.

With more than 80% of turnovers made abroad, the company is growing with its offering of more than 600 truffle-based products. “Exports are steady and the US has become our most important market, where we keep growing,” Olga Urbani says.

“This year, we are aiming at the Far East’s and Dubai’s markets, where we want to enter with a high-level food service model, which we would then like to replicate in other capitals. It will be a line of ready made meals, obviously, truffle-based.”

In Perugia, at the company’s main headquarters, they are getting ready for the Expo Milano 2015, set to open May 1, and are looking for new opportunities. “We will be in the Eataly pavilion. We want to give new energy to Urbani Funghi,” explains Urbani, “which is our other company that specializes in the production and sale of porcini mushrooms, which we source from the Balkans”.

2014 was a record year, “we haven’t seen anything like it in 40 years,” underlines Urbani, and brought the group’s turnovers to €60 million.

The group is also looking into secondary businesses like agricultural tourism, endorsing historical assets like the Truffle Academy and the Paolo Urbani Truffle Museum, dedicated to the company’s founder.