Saturday, July 9, 2011

Patchouli Oil

Today, patchouli oil is used for an anti septic, anti-fungal, anti-acne, eczema cure, chapped skin, dandruff, and to reduce inflammation. In addition, it is also used to help reduce anxiety and depression or to help people with insomnia (difficulty sleeping disorders). At 1980s, its essential oil is often used for aromatherapy ingredients.
Its plant (Pogostemon spp) are known by various names in several areas, such as the: Sumatra-Java, rei (West Sumatra, pisak (Alor), ungapa (East). Among scientist known for several species Pogostemon sp, among others:
• Pogostemon cablin Benth. It is popular with the name of Aceh patchouli, the main characteristic is the leaves are rounded like heart and on the surface of the bottom of the leaves there are much hairs. This species is up to the age of 3 (three) years of almost no interest.
• Pogostemon hortensis Backer. It is known as the soap patchouli. The main characteristic leaf is thinner, hairless, shiny surface of the leaves, and the color is green.
• Pogostemon heyneanus Benth. It is often called as the Java patchouli. The characteristics of the leaf are thin and rather sharp, the color is dark green and it is flowering more quickly.
Of the three types, which is the highest essential oil content is the Aceh (2.5 to 5.0%), while the others contain an average of essential oil content only 0.5 to 1.5%. Nowadays, it has been known for the three varieties of Indonesia with superior productivity of> 300 kg patchouli oil / ha ie Sidikalang, Tapaktuan and Lhokseumawe.
Patchouli oil production is done by distillation, either with steam or high pressure steam. Its main compound is patchouli alcohol (PA)which is about 30%. Patchouli oil composition are: β-patchoulene 2.90 to 3.80%, α-guaiene 13.10 - 15.20%, caryophyllene 3.30 to 3.90%, α-patchoulene 5.10 to 5.90%, seychellene 8.60 to 9.40%, α-bulnesene14.70 to 16.80%, and norpatchoulenol 0.50%. PA is usually used as a basis for determining the desired quality of this oil in addition to the requirement of free from oil contamination by iron (Fe). Therefore, refineries or distillation should be done by using a kettle made of rust-free (stainless steel) instead of iron or steel which are corrosive.
Its cultivation is not too difficult, careful selection of varieties, the management of intensive cultivation and growing environment that meets the requirements, ie at a temperature of 24-28 ° C, rainfall is 2000-3500 mm / year or humidity> 75%, crumb texture of the soil, loose and lots of humus, soil and altitude reached 50-400 m above sea level. Plants that grow in the lowlands have a high oil content, PA is low, and vice versa at high altitude, low oil content but the PA was high. Its production center is scattered mostly in NAD, North Sumatra, West Sumatra, Bengkulu, South Sumatra, West Java, Central Java and East Java. Some areas also began to produce it such as South Sulawesi, East Kalimantan, Central Kalimantan.
Patchouli oil is used as a binder (fixative) of other fragrance ingredients in perfumes and cosmetic compositions. In addition, it can be used to control pests. Besides being used in the form of oil, it is also useful for skin moisturizing ingredient, eliminates body odor, body and drug preservatives, and medical treatment to the skin.
It is exported to various countries like USA, Singapore, Japan, France, Switzerland, UK, Taiwan, Holland, Germany and China with the export volume of 2,074,250 kg of oil, the export value of U.S. $ 27,136,913 in 2004 (BPS, 2007). Its world consumption in 2006 is about 1500 tons / year and Indonesia are the major producers. Situation in 2007 - 2008 which is not conducive (the price is fluctuated quite significantly) resulting in drop of its production and consumption to more than 40% (Mulyadi, 2008). The performance of Indonesia patchouli oil exports by volume (kg) estimated that only about 50-60% of exports in 2006, although the value (GBP/USD) to rise sharply because there is a significant price hikes.

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