Agarwood, also known as agar, oud, or oodh, is a rare high cost wood that develops in Aquilaria and Gyrinops trees in Southeast Asia.The trees are fast-growing forest trees and can grow nearly 1000 meters in height. When the trees become infected with a certain mold, they produce a dark aromatic resin to fight off the attack. The result is dark embedded heartwood which is valued in many cultures for its distinctive aroma. The main reason why Agarwood is rare and costly is the fact that all Aquilaria species are listed as the endangered species of Wild Fauna and Flora. The Aquilaria trees can grow on different types of soils, which include poor sandy soil. Seedlings require a lot of shade and water. These trees which grow very fast, start producing seeds and flowers as early as four years old.
Agarwood, which is also known as “Wood of the Gods,” has been highly valued and traded for thousands of years. This aromatic wood is used for medicinal purposes, as incense, and in the distilled form, it is used as a perfume component and perfume. Agarwood is known around the globe and it is used by religious healers in the Middle East at healing ceremonies. The Japanese pilgrims donate Agarwood oil and flowers to Shinto-Buddhist temples. In other Delta communities, Vietnamese religious groups must bring Agarwood to temple ceremonies. Agarwood oil is dark and thick, yet non sticky. Agarwood oil has been used in treating lung and stomach tumors, fevers, asthma, cancer, nausea, bronchial problems, and general pains.
Agarwood oil is used in perfumes. Agarwood is used as a base by Amouage and Yves Saint Laurent in their most exclusive perfumes. Advertising agencies announced the launch of La Collection M7 Oud Absolu by Yves Saint Laurent in 2011.
Cosmetics and Hair products
Agarwood oil is used in hair products to manage dry and frizzy hair. It is also used for facial creams and body lotions.
In countries such as Malaysia and Taiwan, Agarwood oil is used to add flavor to curries and local wines.
Agarwood oil contains a natural component, Valerian, which functions to calm the nervous system and relieves insomnia, which allows a person to have a longer, deeper sleep.
Agarwood has been loved and treasured for thousands of years, by romantics and mystics alike. Oud is declared as an aid to religious meditation. Lovers use it as an aphrodisiac. Agarwood is used in variety of powerful magical formulas for drawing a lover near.
Agarwood is so rare and expensive it makes gold and diamond purchases seem affordable in comparison. First-grade Agarwood is extremely valuable. Depending on cultural disposition and geographical location, an entire range of qualities of Agarwood and related products are available on the market. The price of Agarwood oil ranges from a couple of dollars to more than $30.000 per pound for top quality. Only a few people have the expertise to determine true Agarwood quality. Agarwood has been used in numerous countries and almost every religious tradition all over the world. In fact, for thousands of years, many cultures have recognized Agarwood and Agarwood oil as the most valuable incense and perfume ingredient.
Future of Agarwood
Since Aquilaria trees are listed as endangered species, farmers in Assam started replanting Agarwood trees throughout the region. Since then, Agarwood nurseries have created tens of thousands of healthy seedlings for Agarwood plantations. The farmers encourage everyone to plant these beautiful trees in their yards once again.