Rosewood essential oil is extracted from the wood of the rosewood (Aniba rosaeodora) tree. According to the IUCN (Varty, 1998), the conservation status of this tree is endangered and “populations throughout the species range have seriously declined because of rosewood oil extraction. Where there has been exploitation, population(s) [are] devoid of mature trees and significant signs of regeneration are absent”. You can help protect and conserve this species by not buying this essential oil or product(s) that contains it; there are other essential oils with similar *chemical profiles which don’t come from vulnerable, endangered, or critically endangered plants. And if you continue to purchase this oil, make sure it is being distilled from wood that is sustainably harvested or is CITES certified; however,there can still be cause for concern. Two distillers in Peru who apparently meet these standards would not answer questions relating to their practice, or allow persons on their property.
If you are interested in rosewood reforestation projects, please email Kelly for more information. Also, be on the lookout for my blog post about this and other endangered essential-oil bearing plants.
*Chemical profile for rosewood (A. rosaeodora): Linalool 82.3 – 90.3%; α -Terpineol 0.5-5.4%; (Z)-Linalool oxide ~1.5%; (E)-Linalool oxide ~1.3%; 1,8-Cineole 0.2-2.3% (Lawrence 1989 in Tisserand & Young, 2013)
Tisserand, R. and Young, R. 2013. Essential Oil Safety: A Guide for Health Care Professionals. Churchill Livingstone; 2nd Ed. pp. 409-410.
Varty, N. 1998. Aniba rosodora. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 1998: e.T33958A68966060. Downloaded on 24 February 2017.