The Luce Institute was created in Rome, where it still resides, in 1924. It is the oldest public institution destined to film diffusion for educational and informative purposes of the world. His initial intent was to develop the education of the Italian population, then in large part illiterate, through the images (hence the acronym LUCE, which means the educational cinematographic union), later became one of the centers of diffusion and production of films and documentaries destined to cinemas.
In the opening video of the article, great historical document of prestige always recognized to the truffle, is documented the Norcia Black Truffle Festival of 1953, inaugurated by the future Italian President of the Council Amintore Fanfani. Among the Umbrian mountains, the cavatori, equipped with work tools and inseparable dogs, are hunting for black truffles. Some quarrymen still use pigs, the first animal used in the search for the precious truffle, later replaced with the dog because of the excessive voracity of the pig that, too often, transformed the prized black diamond into a dear snack. The dedication and love for the despised mushroom hypogeum, in fact remember that the truffle is not a tuber as many write, is also demonstrated by the feast that is dedicated to him: allegorical floats that parade in honor of the black of Norcia, people in celebration, general euphoria.
“I remember my father Paolo’s tales”, he tells with emotion Olga Urbani, “he told me that every year was a feast, the scent of truffles inebriated the present and spread in all the alleys of Norcia where women cooked, for the occasion, noodles, ragged and other truffle recipes. The quarrymen were tired but happy showing the results of their hunting with pride, always by the side of their dogs or pigs. The protagonists of the day then visited our company, were entertained with the urban family and often were born important collaborations and projects to invest on truffles and the future of our country, initially understood as ‘territory of Valnerina’ then, more generally, as ‘Umbria’ and later, with increasing breath, as ‘Italy’ and ‘excellence of Made in Italy in the world’. Time has passed so much and, from year to year, the village festivals have turned into international trade shows reaching an increasing number of people. What has not changed is the passion that has always distinguished us.
The Urbani family began its adventure six generations ago, thanks to the talent of a quarter of truffles with a “nose” not only for the precious diamonds of the Earth but also for the business. In the Truffle Museum Paolo Urbani in Scheggino is enclosed this story that, for long pages, intertwined and overlaps the history of the urban family with the history of the truffle itself. It all began with an all-Italian discovery, marked by urban fire: a new way of preserving the truffle, an “ad hoc” preservation that exceeded and made obsolete the French methods in vogue until then. And so it was that a simple quarrying, began that path that has made the international excellence Umbra aiming even overseas, successful company to the next generation, that of Carlo Urbani.
“My grandfather Carlo Urbani was a visionary, one of those who changed the story”, says Giammarco Urbani. “It is with great pride and responsibility that I bring his surname and it is with great dedication and passion that, continuing the work of my uncle Paolo and my father Bruno, current President of the Group, I dedicate myself with my cousin Olga, to my wife Paola, to my brother Charles and to my grandchildren Luca and Francesco, to continue the dream of my ancestors. We have not stopped at America, now we are on every continent and, as my father said, urban in the world means truffle. Innovation, research, biological, technology, culture, human resources: these are the ingredients that make our company the world leader of truffles. It’s great to perceive how behind a web page, an e-shop, a single-dose pod or a stick of truffle for sushi, there may be the brilliant spark of a man like Carlo Urbani, who during the first years of ‘900 had perhaps already imagined all this by succeeding in making and of the truffle not only a product of indisputable merit but a modus vivendi, an example of how it is possible to make always, new and inimitable a product that the generous nature continues to give us for millennia”.
And since that day of 1949 in New York or 1953 in Norcia, Urbani has never tired of carrying on his vision of the truffle and to commit to the affirmation of this product among the world’s Excellencies, all Italian pride. Many fairs in which it participates: The SIAL in Paris, TUTTOFOOD in Milan, CIBUS in Parma, FANCY FOOD of New York and San Francisco, ALIMENTARIA of Barcelona, SIRHA of Lyon and SIGEP of Rimini as well as concomitance of important national and international culinary events.