LtN Chinese Melanosporum Truffles

Major differences between newly discovered black winter truffle and Tuber Indicum
Difference between LtN Tuber Melanosporum, Tuber Indicum and Tuber Himalayensis
by Isaac, general manager of Sichuan Truffle Hunters Co., Ltd.

There are generally three types of black winter truffles in existence in Mainland China, namely LtN Melanosporum, Tuber Indicum and Tuber Himalayensis. For those truffle importers overseas, these truffles might cause confusion among them from several aspects, which will be explained separately in the rest of this article.


1, Aroma Intensity: the most obvious and profound difference.


Lets suppose there is an aroma intensity index, where a full mark is 10. The three truffles with same freshness and are all in their full maturity, would score as follows:


LtN melanosporum truffles aroma intensity is: 8.5-10

Tuber Indicum aroma intensity is: 0.5-2

Tuber Himalayensis aroma intensity is: 0.5-1.5

whereas Europe Melanosporum truffles aroma intensity would score: 6-8.5.

2, Maturity and End season: The second most obvious difference.


LtN Melanosporum truffles: Late September-Early December (ripe season lasts 45-60 days)

Tuber Indicum: Late December-Early April (ripe season lasts 120 days)

Tuber Himalayensis: Late November-Early Mrach (ripe season lasts 120 days)


Please Note: maturity season is the time when truffle cross-section color turns black; but truffle hunters in China harvest them well before that time, even when the color is still white.


3, Outerskin color, shape and size differences when totally ripe:








LtN Melanosporum truffles: mostly with black skin color, come with various shapes, length ranging

from 1.5cm-10cm, warts /bumps are small.

Tuber Indicum truffles: mostly withbrown or light black color, come with various shapes length ranging from 1.5cm-10cm, warts /bumps are small.

Tuber Himalayensis: mostly are round in shapes, length ranging from 1.5-5cm, warts/bumps are around 2-3 times bigger than the above mentioned two truffles and are always covered in black soil.

4, Density difference:


For the same sizeLtN Melanosporum is much lighter than Tuber Indicum and Tuber Hima­layensis; if put in water, most LtN Melanosporum truffles float while Tuber Indicum and Tuber Himalayensis truffles sink to the buttom.


5, Habitats location difference:


Most Tuber Indicum and all Tuber Himalayensis habitats are in Yunnan.

LtN Tuber Melanosporum habitat is around 1500-2000km away from Yunnan.


6, Discovery year difference:


LtN Tuber Melanosporum was firstly discovered by our truffle hunters in 2018;

Tuber Indicum and Tuber Himalayensis were discovered in 1990s.


7, Yearly Yield/Output difference:


Lets suppose there is a yearly yield/ output index, where a full mark is 10. The three truffles would score respectively as follows:


Tube Indicum has the highest yearly yield/ output index: 10;

Tuber Himalayensis has the second highest yearly yield/ output index: 2;

LtN Tuber Melanosporum has the lowest yearly yield/ output index: 0.8-1.

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