It grows at elevations from a few meters above sea level to about meters, with approx. Aquilaria can grow on a wide range of soils, including poor sandy soil. Seedlings require a great deal of shade and water but will grow rapidly, producing flowers and seeds as early as four years old. At least fifteen species of Aquilaria are known to produce the much sought-after agarwood. In South Asia, particularly India, Aquilaria achalloga is found. Aquilaria malaccensis is mostly known from Malaysia and Indonesia, while Aquilaria crassna grows primarily in Indochina.
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It grows at elevations from a few meters above sea level to about meters, with approx. Aquilaria can grow on a wide range of soils, including poor sandy soil. Seedlings require a great deal of shade and water but will grow rapidly, producing flowers and seeds as early as four years old. At least fifteen species of Aquilaria are known to produce the much sought-after agarwood. In South Asia, particularly India, Aquilaria achalloga is found.
Aquilaria malaccensis is mostly known from Malaysia and Indonesia, while Aquilaria crassna grows primarily in Indochina. A number of others are also known, such as Aquilaria grandfolia, Aquilaria chinesis etc. The resinous wood is used as incense, for medicinal purposes, and pure resin in distilled form is used as an essential oil as well as a perfume component. A strong connection exists between use, religion, and curative properties, and elaborate traditional and religious ceremonies are known around the world.
Faith healers in the Middle East use it at curative ceremonies, Japanese pilgrims donate flowers and agarwood oil to Shinto-Buddhist temples, and Vietnamese religious groups are obliged to bring agarwood to ceremonies at their temples in Mekong Delta communities.
Agarwood Value The value of first-grade Agarwood is extremely high. A wide array of products of different grades is available on the market, varying with geographical location and cultural deposition.
Aquilaria crassna is listed as a critically endangered species in Viet Nam, and A. Agarwood Extinction Resin-producing agarwood trees are endangered throughout their known habitat all across Southeast Asia.
The main driving force, which initiated this project, was the recognition of unsustainable Aquilaria harvesting in natural forests that resulted in the near extinction of this tree genus in Viet Nam and elsewhere.
Aquilaria crassna is now a protected species in Viet Nam. Trade and harvesting restrictions will be virtually impossible to implement and enforce if no alternative is developed to forest-based harvesting. In addition, both in the short and long-term, a natural resource base needs to be maintained to supply present and future Aquilaria plantations with genetic source material in order to prevent plant decease, maintain diversity, and possibly improve resin production.
Agarwood Substitutes Development of synthetic agarwood substitutes usually arises when sustainable supplies of the natural product are not available. Agarwood cannot be synthesized. Chemical substitutes are already available for perfume; these are cheap and constitute the least profitable end of the market.
In addition, these products do not come close in emulating the natural product and thus do not pose a threat to producing non-synthetic agarwood products. The major chemical components responsible for the characteristic scent of agarwood products, carbon chain compounds called sesquiterterpenes, can in principle be synthesized. However, these are very complicated structures that are extremely expensive to synthesize, which makes it commercially unattractive.
Agarwood Essential Oil — Oud Oil Known also as Oud oil, agarwood is one of the most precious, rare and certainly most expensive essential oils in existence today. Agarwood is sometimes called Gaharu. The essential oil is derived from the heartwood of the agarwood tree. There are a number of popular species but typically aquilaria malaccensis, aquilaria agallocha or Aquilaria crassna are used to make the oil. When the trees are healthy, agarwood has a light or pale color but when it is infected by disease, the process of infection creates a response to the attack resulting in a very dark and incredibly aromatic resin known as oleoresin.
It is this rich dark resin which is so highly prized and from which agarwood essential oil is extracted. In the wild, the production of this resin can take many years and like a good wine, the older the resin-the more prized it becomes.
Because of its huge cost and extreme rarity in the wild, the trees are now cultivated and the resin is actually created by artificial infection and its essential oil extracted by water distillation.
There are many grades of Agarwood oil. The quality of grade is dependent on the grade of wood used and the length of distillation. Typically, the longer the distillation time the higher the grade.
It costs hundreds for 5ml and oud oil is typically sold by weight. Because of its rarity and mythic status in almost all of the worlds religions—it is extremely expensive. The scent is particularly sought after. It is believed to be the most powerful natural aphrodisiac. Most Agarwood oud oil is purchased and consumed primarily by Saudi Arabia and Japan.
There are no truly similar species or known sythetics that come close to the real scent. The fungal infection that helps create the resin makes its extract very unique.
Adulteration can and does happen on many levels. On the raw materials level—trees either uninfected or a lower grade of wood. Often it can even be a different but similar species of tree. Even among infected trees the method of infection natural or stimulated can have an effect on the compounds in the wood. On the distillation level—the distiller can include the hydrosol with the essential oil or lie about the length of distillation.
On the distribution level—the oil is cut with other oils or synthetic chemicals are added to attempt to replicate the scent. It is extensively mentioned in the Sanskrit Vedas as a favorite of Lord Krishna.
Agarwood has played an important role in many religious traditions all over the world. It has been revered for millennia for its fragrance in religious ceremony and its incense burned at the burial of Jesus Christ. King Louis XIV had his clothing washed in water scented with agarwood.
Agarwood smoke was used to scent the armor of Samurai warriors before heading into battle. In Genesis, agarwood is mentioned as the only tree from which Adam and Eve could take cuttings. Although it is not that well known in the West, agarwood has a rich history of medicinal use in many cultures.
It has been used for centuries by physicians in Tibet, India, China and the Arab world to treat a range of physical and mental conditions. The Prophet Mohammed used Agarwood to perform fumigation rituals, a practice which is continued today by Orthodox. Plantations International Related posts:.
What is Agarwood
Agarwood Sales In recognition that the available supply of natural agarwood is or will be exhausted in the wild within the next decade, AgarwoodSales have developed a co-operative of three hundred farmers within Thailand. Who are AgarwoodSales? AgarwoodSales was developed to meet ongoing international demand for all agarwood products and to research and develop new products at affordable prices. In recognition that the available supply of natural agarwood is or will be exhausted in the wild within the next decade, AgarwoodSales have developed a co-operative of three hundred farmers within Thailand. All with plantations of primarily Aquilaria Crassana ranging from trees planted between two and twenty five years of age, many are now at various stages of inoculation to encourage Incense Formation. Harvested and carved in local communities, the co-operative offers the farmers and poor rural areas a means of employment and much needed income and by ensuring they are not exploited, an ethical relationship is fostered for the benefit of all involved in the process. Agarwood has been harvested and used over millennia and AgarwoodSales supply the full range of agarwood products including oils, woodchips and powder.
The King of Agarwood — Kinam, Types of Kinam What is Agarwood Agarwood is a resinous substance formed inside agarwood trees that arises as a result of infection with a type of mold. Prior to infection, the timber of the tree does not bear any scent. When the tree is wounded and infected by a type of mold, the tree produces resin to aid in suppressing the fungal growth. This resin is dark, dense and aromatic. The resin embedded wood is commonly known as aloes, aloeswood or agarwood.