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Nick Malajczuk comes over from Australia once a year to independently test the trees that Southern Cross Truffles infects with truffle spore. I am happy to report that yet again we have done the job!
Here is some of what Nick had to say about the report he did on the seedlings raised at Southern Woods Nursery on the 8th April 2013.
"The assessment was based on the methods developed by INRA, France and involved both visual assessment of the root system under a binocular microscope and eye. The black truffle fungus forms characteristic brown mycorrhizal roots with tuffs of hyphae, which occasionally radiate from the surface of the mycorrhizal root. The black truffle fungus formed by Tuber melanosporum can generally be readily distinguished from other truffle fungi and more so from other competitors such as Scleroderma or Hebeloma species. Tuber borchii mucorrhizas are similar to that of melanosporum but lack tuffs of mycelium and generally are covered with external mycelium."
He then finishes with what we were all waiting to read…
"There was little evidence of any contaminating fungi on the roots of these seedlings suggesting that the method of production of inoculated seedlings is excellent.
I would recommend that the seedlings are saleable."
For further details on this report or to purchase your trees please contact Southern Woods Nursery.
Co-ordinated Marketing and Sales:
As more truffles are produced in New Zealand there is a growing need for a coordinated marketing and sales service for these.
Southern Cross Truffles (SCT) has been successfully growing and harvesting its own truffles and selling these to the New Zealand market. This year, 2013, SCT will start distributions to several overseas contacts that we have established relationships with over the years.
The black truffle can be stored for 1-2 weeks if chilled, but flavour and texture will deteriorate after this. It is therefore highly important that there is little delay between the time of collection and final use, whether that is in a New Zealand restaurant or in the northern hemisphere.
Southern Cross Truffles has contracts ready to take New Zealand truffles! These include well established relationships with several high-end restaurants, wineries and culinary chefs in New Zealand, as well as interested parties elsewhere; in Europe, the USA, China and other parts of Asia. All with the aim of establishing long term supply arrangements at very attractive prices. Asia is seen as a long term priority.
There is an opportunity here for you to take advantage of these contacts whilst not having to worry about all the preparation and distribution with the truffle having such a short shelf life. SCT already have these systems in place for their own Perigord black truffle.
Any person who has bought trees from Southern Cross Truffles (this can also be through Southern Woods Nursery) or has harvested their truffles with the services of Tracey Billingsly and her team can sell produce through SCT's sales channels.
Meet, Greet and Harvest Truffles:
Southern Cross Truffles is considering setting up a meet and greet for a morning in late August at the site in Waipara, North Canterbury.
It is possible that there will be a short informative presentation but the main purpose would be to meet other growers, share ideas, experiences and knowledge as well as witness the all important harvesting of truffles.
This is very much at the early stages of planning. We are only now building our long awaited glorified shed on site for your hot drinks and scones! But if this is finished in time and enough people are interested we will be able to announce a date and time for the event to go ahead.
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