Postharvest diseases of Tuber melanosporum
Black truffle (Tuber melanosporum), known also as black Périgord truffle, is well-known as high value product and appreciated for its characteristic taste and aroma. It is harvested on spontaneously mycorrhized plants in several areas of Europe (e.g., Italy, France, Spain), and it is grown on artificially inoculated plants here and in several other areas of the world (Chile, Australia, South Africa). After harvest, black truffles suffer from dehydration, so it is stored at 2-4°C within paper towels, which need to be changed every 1-2 days, in order to absorb excess of water. Storage can last no longer than 7-10 days, later fungi and bacteria may develop, using the truffle as a substrate. Postharvest decay agents of black truffle include filamentous fungi, yeasts and bacteria. Most common fungi described in literature are Aspergillus, Cladosporium, Fusarium, Penicillium and Trichoderma, some of which are able to produce mycotoxins. Among bacteria, we can find Pseudomonas spp., Clostridium spp., lactic bacteria, coliforms (Escherichia coli, Listeria monocytogenes), and Enterobacteriaceae (Raoultella terrigena, Enterobacter intermedius), some of which able to produce toxins, and included in the list of foodborne pathogens. The development and application of strategies to improve the shelf life of black truffle is important to extend their postharvest life and reduce the development of pathogens that can be harmful for consumers.
Romanazzi, G., Servili, A. and Murolo, S. (2016). Postharvest diseases of Tuber melanosporum. Acta Hortic. 1144, 129-132
black truffles, microrganisms, fungi, bacteria