Truffle mania

| Print |  Email
Articles - April 2012
Thursday, March 22, 2012

 

0412_TruffleMania_06
// Photo by Leah Nash

To date, Lefevre has planted about a dozen truffieres in Oregon, and many in other states. One of his customers is Jim Bernau, founder and president of Willamette Valley Vineyards. Bernau recently hired Lefevre to plant three acres of truffle trees on land near Tualatin. He serves on the Oregon Truffle Festival’s advisory board and his winery is a longtime festival sponsor.

Bernau also bankrolled the 2009 feasibility study because he felt the nascent truffle industry needed the sort of guidance that Ted Casteel’s popular tome, Oregon Winegrape Growers’ Guide, provided early Oregon winemakers. As far as he’s concerned, Oregon wine and Oregon truffles go hand in hand. “The pairing of pinot noir and truffle-infused food is just perfect,” says Bernau. “They’re meant to be with each other.”

From a tourism standpoint, truer words were never spoken. To Holly MacFee, Travel Oregon’s vice president for Global Brand Strategy, the pairing of Oregon wine and Oregon truffles is a winning proposition for the state. “We’re lucky to have truffles because they really do elevate our reputation as a culinary destination,” she says.

The state does its part to promote the truffle industry through advertising, such as the 15-second spot filmed by Wieden+Kennedy as part of Travel Oregon’s Oregon Bounty campaign that features a truffle hunter and his dog seeking fungal treasures in the forest. Oregon truffles also will be featured at Feast Portland, a food event already getting national attention that’s planned for Sept. 20-23. Mike Thelin, one of the event organizers, says local truffles will impress attendees of the keystone event on Sept. 22, “Porklandia.”

“When people come from other places, they know we have pinot, they know we have pork, they know we have beer, they know we have great chef talent,” says Thelin. “And then they find out, oh, you have truffles too? It’s like, does it ever end? What’s next? Local bananas and pineapple?”

 



 

Comments   

 
Michael Vaughn
0 #1 Oregon Truffles Unsustainable, for NowMichael Vaughn 2012-04-09 22:59:50
I found this to be an excellent article on Oregon’s “emerging” truffle industry. However, as a recreational truffle harvester for the past seven seasons, I have seen first-hand the damage done to private and public property by unscrupulous people. This article, as well as Lefevre’s coauthored feasibility report, downplays this scourge on the industry.

Most of this damage comes from commercial harvesters not harvesting in ethical ways. Meth-heads and commercial crews are there for one thing: to harvest as many truffles as they can, in the shortest amount of time, and with the least effort. Money is all that matters; to hell with ethics and the environment – as well as quality truffles.

NATS, the Oregon Truffle Festival organization, the State of Oregon, chefs, and consumers share the blame for this atrocious act. As it stands right now, the Oregon truffle industry is unsustainable, and those wanting to promote (i.e. make money) this industry ignore this fact.
Quote | Report to administrator
 

More Articles

Corner Office: Marv LaPorte

January-Powerbook 2015
Saturday, December 13, 2014

The president of LaPorte & Associates lets us in on his day-to-day life.


Read more...

Kill the Meeting

November/December 2014
Wednesday, October 22, 2014
BY AMY MILSHTEIN

Meetings get a bad rap. A few local companies make them count.


Read more...

Top stories in 2014

The Latest
Thursday, December 18, 2014
10-listthumb

2014 was a year of wild contradictions, fast-paced growth and unexpected revelations.


Read more...

Editor's Letter: Power Play

January-Powerbook 2015
Thursday, December 11, 2014

There’s a fascinating article in the December issue of the Harvard Business Review about a profound power shift taking place in business and society. It’s a long read, but the gist revolves around the tension between “old power” and “new power” as a driver of transformation. Here’s an excerpt:

Old power works like a currency. It is held by few. Once gained, it is jealously guarded, and the powerful have a substantial store of it to spend. It is closed, inaccessible, and leader-driven. It downloads, and it captures.

New power operates differently, like a current. It is made by many. It is open, participatory, and peer-driven. It uploads, and it distributes. Like water or electricity, it’s most forceful when it surges. The goal with new power is not to hoard it but to channel it.

The authors, Henry Timms and Jeremy Heimans, don’t necessarily favor one form of power over another but merely outline how power is transitioning, and how companies can take advantage of these changes to strengthen their positions in the marketplace. 

Our Powerbook issue might be viewed as a case study in the new-power transition. This annual book of lists provides information on leading businesses, nonprofits and universities in the state. Most of the featured companies are entrenched power players now pursuing more flexible and less hierarchical approaches to doing business. Law firms, for example, are adopting new technologies and fee structures to make legal services more accessible and affordable.

This month we also take a look at a controversial new U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission rule requiring public companies to disclose the median pay of workers, as well as the ratio between CEO and median-worker pay. 

Part of the 2010 Dodd-Frank financial reform law, the rule will compel public companies to be more open about employee compensation, with the assumption that greater transparency will improve corporate performance and, perhaps, help address one of the major challenges of our time: income inequality.

New power is not only about strategy and tactics, the Harvard Business Review authors say. “The ultimate questions are ethical. The big question is whether new power can genuinely serve the common good and confront society’s most intractable problems.”

That sounds like a call to arms. Or a New Year’s resolution. Old power or new, the goals are the same: to be a force for positive change in the world. Happy 2015!

— Linda


Read more...

Leading with the right brain

News
Tuesday, December 09, 2014
120914-manderson-thumbBY LINDA BAKER

On the eve of the Portland Ad Federation's Rosey Awards, Matt Anderson, CEO of Struck, talks about the transition from creative director to CEO, the Portland talent pool and whether data is the new black in the creative services sector.


Read more...

A Complex Portrait: Immigration, Jobs and the Economy

November/December 2014
Wednesday, October 22, 2014
BY JOE ROJAS-BURKE & KIM MOORE

Oregon Business reports on the visa squeeze, the skills gap and foreign-born residents who are revitalizing rural Oregon.


Read more...

Justice for All

January-Powerbook 2015
Thursday, December 11, 2014
BY JESSICA RIDGWAY

Lawger upends the typical hourly based fee model by letting clients determine the cost.


Read more...
Oregon Business magazinetitle-sponsored-links-02
SPONSORED LINKS