Often referred to as 'Rose Geranium Oil' this is one of the most important and most commonly used ingredients in perfumery.
China is the world's largest producer with the concentration of production in the Yunnan Provence. It is easy to grow in this region with some farms able to harvests 4 times a year if conditions are favourable. It is estimated production levels are around 80-110 MT per annum with 20-30 MT consumed internally, the balance exported.
France and the USA are cited as the world's largest importers; however, it is assumed that France is the biggest consumer (for fine fragrance).
Chinese geranium is rich in ‘citronellol’, accounting for just over 40% of the oil. Despite it's higher prices in today's market it is still the most sought after quality because of this fact. Other origins like Egypt contain 25% less citronellol.
Based on unconfirmed data China's geranium exports can be summarised as follows:
High quality products in the market are geranoil > 5.5% and betaguaiadiene > 6%. There is good demand for the oil. But with the crop season almost over availability has become an issue. The oil price is expected to rise around the Chinese national day, though it should adjust with the fall in temperature and reduction in availability after the festival period. This price reduction will not be significant since the quantities are limited. Due to the low labour price planting has been minimal this year. Around 400-500 kg of the oil is available weekly. These quantities are bought by collectors, who hoard them till the price goes up.
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