Many associate Australia with eucalyptus oil due to their close association with traditions and of course the ever-loved Koala. However on a commercial scale, it is China that exports most around the world, in particular the industry standard Eucalyptus globulus (containing 80% cineole).
The quality of eucalyptus can be measured by its cineole content. Some species yield cineole levels above 95% but the industry has standardised on 80% for most everyday applications.
Eucalyptus can be found across a broad range of industries and applications and as a natural ingredient, it's one of the most commonly found in everyones household.
Around the house some common uses and applications could be as follows:
~ Cold and flu relief - drops of oils on towels, in vaporisers, steam rooms etc
~ Hair nourishment - lice control (usually with tea tree), dandruff and scalp cure
~ Hand cleaners - it's a natural degreaser
~ Household cleaners - in addition to a nice fresh fragrance to your home products, it adds vital antimicrobial properties as well. Soap, laundry detergents, toilet cleaners, window cleaners, worktop sprays to name just a few!
~ Treat wounds - antimicrobial and antiseptic properties that are effective at treating wounds, burns, cuts, abrasions, sores and scrapes
You can imagine the volumes absorbed into consumer goods are enormous. Last year China alone exported over 9,000 metric tonnes!!
Last year, China produced around 10,000 MT of eucalyptus oil. This year the demand has fallen due to the completion of earlier orders and a drop in prices for crude oil. This has somewhat dampened the enthusiasm of farmers and made crop collection rather challenging. Some factories are now lacking enough raw materials for distillation and prices are showing an upward trend.
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