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The manmade deforestation problem continues to grab at the world’s natural wood resources at an indiscriminate rate of 10 million hectares a year. These mega-machines make no distinction between ferns, palms, timbers, hardwoods, shrubs and the agarwood tree we love – every obstruction in the way of the machine is run or cut down.
The reality is, indiscriminate deforestation for tropical logs is one the single major threats to agarwood. As an example, between 2000 and 2018 deforestation accounted for 39% of Borneo jungles being cleared. This is significant as Borneo jungles are part of a group of jungles in South East Asia homing one of the highest number of oudh trees. It would be safe to say there is a good possibility that 39% of agarwood trees in the Borneo tropical jungles were also wiped out as part of this deforestation.
With the deforestation dilemma not going away any time soon, it is important that we – as the Oudh community – pay more respect to plantation, home grown and organic Oudh. I have been writing about the importance of the Oudh and fragrance community supporting sustainable initiatives around Oudh for awhile now. Al Shareef is part of a number of initiatives in forwarding this cause. For a number of years we have been investing money, time, equipment and skill in producing premium quality Oudh from both plantations and organic sources so that you, the customer, can embrace the change.
In advocating for this cause, today we present to you another milestone in enhancing the quality, variety and possibility of plantation Oudh.
LIU ZHI is an oudh named after an individual. Unlike most of our oils that have Arabic names, Liu Zhi is a Chinese name and for good reason. Liu Zhi is a Chinese oil named after the great Sino-Muslim Polymath Liu Zhi. One of the most prolific Muslim authors contributing greatly to the Han Kitab, the corpus of Islamic manuals in Chinese, Liu Zhi wrote extensively about theological questions, ritual practice, legal norms, metaphysical pursuits, Quran and Hadith, and translations of Arabic and Persian texts.
Considered the apex of the Islamic textual tradition in Chinese, both for the size of his literary output and the originality of his theological skills, Liu Zhai was a visionary and person who contributed significantly to the Islamic literature tradition in Chinese facilitating for the Chinese to be educated about Islamic science in Chinese.
Liu Zhi is a visionary oil. Distilled from organic/plantation Oudh, the trees used for this distillation are from one of the oldest if not oldest Oudh in China. This plantation is located on a hill side with the trees grown on hill ranges close to wild jungles. The trees are in an identical environment (apart from pruning and general care taking) to the wild trees and are otherwise left to grow like the wild. To activate the immune response of trees that develop Oudh, the trees are physically marked with drills and there are no nails or objects left in the tree. The markings trigger the trees response and the resin formation begins.
Distilled in Chinese style stainless steel hydro/steam distillation apparatus, this oil is one of a kind. From the wood, to the distillation style and ageing, I can comfortably say you will not find another Chinese oil with this combination. Already aged for more than a year and close to 2 years, you will experience the prime facets of this wonderful oil.
Liu Zhi is a meditative oil, immediately relaxing you and bringing a cool blanket of comfort and serenity. The opening a soft kynamic apple floral note, coupled with a touch of the mind-freeze similar to the famous freeze of tiger balm but without the heavy notes. The middle notes provide an atmosphere before scent, the atmosphere is that of goodness,; bits of cinnamon not cassia, delicate and delightful, sprinkles of clove, green bamboo shoots, Chinese florals and the beginning of faint whiffs of sinensis on a heater. Then returns the wonderful Chinese florals, delicate, not sweet but delightfully pleasant, poetic, philosophical and scholarly.
I am absolutely blown away by the potential shown by these woods and the result in Liu Zhi is a game changer. Along side our wild oils Al Shareef has also been at the forefront of bringing to the market the most amazing organic/plantation oils. We have won competitions with our organic oils, where we have outperformed wild oils by other vendors.
Liu Zhi is the future – and we are at the forefront of bringing these gems to you.
The fragrance of middle eastern royalty, natural, niche and luxury.
When used in a perfume composition, Oud is most often a base note, which tends to remain on the skin long after the others dissipate. Since they form the perfume’s foundation, base notes are very rich, heavy and long-lasting (up to six hours and more). They serve to enhance the scent of other ingredients; and, in some cases, they impart a fragrance all their own. While most wood notes are known for their earthy qualities, Oud provides a pleasant sweet scent and is often featured in a synthetic version because it is so costly to harvest.