Updated: May 1, 2021
Agarwood is considered as most expensive and rare wood around the world.
What is Agarwood?
Agarwood is typically a tree which is known for its essential oil and fragrance. Agarwood is most expensive wood around the world. In India its grown in North East region of Asia. Agartala a city in north east got his name due to this tree.
How it's grown?
Agarwood trees are planted in the region where rainfall is at-least 2000 - 2500 mm. In India they are mostly grown in North East region and some part of Orissa also. They need 100 - 120 days of precipitation for healthy growth of tree. Tree are allowed to grow for 8 months then farmer or producer makes holes by drilling in tree and then they are artificially infected. to heal from this infection Agar-wood tree produces a fungal infection known as PHIALOPHORA PARASITICA which heal tree in form of a black color dark resin.
This infected resin can be sold for 100,000 US dollars per kg. The global market of this wood is approx. 6 billion us dollars but only 10% of the demand is achieved sustainably.
Not only the resin part, even the wood residue is sold at higher price as burning this wood produces a sweet smell which is in high demand among Arab countries and used in hospitality sector.
Its pure oil can be sold for 100,000 us dollars per liter. This highly demanded oil is used in may most expensive perfumes around the world.
If this tree if infected naturally then it produces high quality resin but this is only 2% of the production rest is done artificially.
Agarwood is considered as critically endangered species of tree. In India they are privately planted as cash crop, it's very rare to found it in natural forests because all wood is smuggled because of high price and demand. Still the people who knows its importance and future of this Agarwood are planting in their fields.
One of the exported in Vietnam told that, they go to forest in the search of these trees and sometimes they dont get anything even after staying there for 20 days!. Forests are very dense and sometime people lost their life due to loamy soil and wild animals.
Its production is declined to almost 80% during last 150 years.
Agarbatti or scanted sticks are very common thing in India, it got its name from Agarwood as they are produced from this wood.