Why is jasmine oil so expensive? The answer lies in its making — watch this video to see what goes behind the process, and how the final result travels across the globe.
The ancient temple town of Tamil Nadu’s Madurai is known as India’s Jasmine city. Madurai’s jasmine oil is one of the most expensive scents in the world, and just 1 kg of this essential oil can cost more than Rs 4 lakh.
But what makes it so costly?
Jasminum sambac, which is the commercially flavoured variety of jasmine, grows in abundance in the city. These can cost up to 10 times more compared to other varieties. Roughly 60 percent of the production cost of jasmine oil is attributed to flowers used.
Jasmine is sold as buds and not as flowers. Once it blooms, the scent doesn’t last long. Harvesters gently handpick fresh, fully developed unopened buds early in the morning. It takes 1,000 kg of flowers to produce 1 kg of jasmine oil.
The extraction process of essential oil is complicated and time-consuming. Carefully selected flowers are treated with a solvent to extract the aromatic compounds. It is then filtered using alcohol.
The essential oil has a sweet fragrance making it perfect to be used in the best perfumes. Interestingly, India exports jasmine oil to France, which is renowned for its perfume industry.
Watch this video to learn more about Madurai’s jasmine oil:
Edited by Divya Sethu