In a new study, researchers have grown graphene from the tea tree plant Melaleuca alternifolia, the same plant used to make essential oils in traditional medicine More »»
Jerome Chopard will represent ATTIA to discuss approaches to combat the growing incidence of ingredient fraud and mislabeling. More »»
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Article on tea tree oil with focus on adulteration published in Tee Land Thursday 14 Nov 2013. More »»
Once harvested, The finely cut M alternifolia biomass is transported to a steam distillation facility where it is batch processed as soon as possible after harvest in specially designed stainless steel stills to yield pure Australian tea tree oil. During distillation, the biomass is saturated with steam and cooked for up to 2 hours in sealed chambers. Once the temperature of the biomass rises to approximately 100°C the mixed oil and steam vapour begins to rise and is passed through a condenser where the sudden drop in temperature to between 35 and 55°C causes it to condense, forming an oil and water mix.
This mixture is then passed into a separation chamber to separate the oil from the water, producing 100% pure tea tree oil which is usually stored in day vessels for a period of 12 hours to allow any water or other contaminants to settle out and for the oil to cool to ambient temperature before being transferred to suitable bulk storage containers until sold.
The water from the steam and condensers is recycled to ensure environmentally responsible management of this precious resource while the spent biomass from which the oil has been extracted is either recycled back onto the fields where it was harvested from or sold as a premium grade mulch, a product that is in high demand as the steam distillation process ensures there are no contaminants or weed seeds present in it. This is another way that members of ATTIA take care to preserve the natural environmental balance to sustain and maintain future resources.
A stainless steel separator - note the glass top where the oil separation can be monitored to minimise water in the tea tree oil.
Pure Australain TTO flowing into the separator
A stainless steel tank for bulk storage of distilled tea tree oil
Page last updated: 11 Mar 2015