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Alba's famous truffle fair held online amid COVID restrictions in Italy

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By Heather Donald
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Food lovers from all over the world normally descend on northern Italy at this time of year for the International Alba White Truffle Fair.

But coronavirus restrictions put pay to the physical event, forcing organisers to adapt and go online.

The fair came up with the idea of holding virtual tasting sessions.

Participants can order packages starting at €250 from the fair's website to receive various truffles and learn about them with the help of experts.

It's not just the fair that has had to adapt — Truffle traders in the town, starved of physical customers, have seen a rise in postal orders.

"A lot of people call because they have been to the store before, and others find us on the internet and ask for information," said Alessandro Bonino, manager of Tartufi Morra.

"We receive an average of about 40 requests per day from private consumers who want to buy truffles, there has been what we might call a boom in demand from those consumers."

Journalist • Heather Donald