Lavandin itself has a history (dating back to the 1820s) of different species all with different compositions. The three most common being ‘Grosso’, ‘Abrialis’ and ‘Super’. In the past, the most common was Abrialis but this has evolved over time with ‘Grosso’ now being the dominant type with over 1,400 MT being produced in France alone each year.
Developed in the 1970's by lavender grower Pierre Grosso, the lavandin grosso plant is a more robust hybrid and grows well at lower altitudes meaning larger plantations on a more commercial scale can be managed successfully. Some of the larger plantations in France are amongst the largest commercial plantations of any essential oil in Europe. Lavandin is mechanically harvested and distilled in much larger volumes than its lavender counterpart. Taking France as an example, when we are comparing the economies of harvesting and distilling it’s the difference between 1,400 MT of lavandin versus 50 MT of lavender, almost 30 times larger! These economies bring a more cost effective product.
Lavandin is said to have a number of therapeutic benefits in particular antiseptic, anti-bacterial, anti-fungal and analgesic properties.
Read more about lavandin grosso and other lavender’s in our Elementary Essential Oils section or watch the video below to see the 2016 harvesting and distillation!
Due to a productivity crisis, the market continues to remain in a tense state. In 2017 there was a sudden drought that damaged plants and adversely impacted production. These successive droughts affected yields per hectare leading to much lower production than normal. Due to drier growing conditions, the lavandin producers in the South East region started to review their working methods in order to remain competitive. Lavandin grosso is being grown in several parts of the French territory. Farmers are convinced that output will increase in the next two years because of the increase in number of producers. As far as the issues of withering go, soil specialists are working on it and farmers are hoping that the problem will be resolved soon. Producers are revising their current modes and means of production, and are exploring ways for sustainable and ecological crop production. The focus is to extend the number of years for viable production while simultaneously maintaining yields; and if possible increasing it.
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