The overall process, whilst simple, has taken many years to develop and perfect. The complexity being in harvesting trees of varying sizes from the widely dispersed mallee plantings, integrated throughout the farming landscape.
Old growth trees in their natural habitat are not harvested. We only harvest trees planted on farms in conjunction with traditional agriculture.
Mature trees are harvested from an existing pool of trees. After two to three years they coppice (re-grow) and are able to be harvested again. To expand our supply of trees, new trees need to be planted so that in four years these also will be ready for harvesting.
Between harvesting, the trees are providing important environmental benefits such as:
The uniquely designed biomass harvester collects the foliage with minimum impact to the trees. The added advantage of the re-grown trees is that generally there is a greater ratio of leaves to wood resulting in higher oil yields.
The leaves are steam distilled, a process powered by a solid fuel boiler fired by waste leaf from previous extractions. The water used for steaming and for cooling is continually recycled through the production process. The extracted oil is then packaged while the trees are left to coppice (regrow) in their natural environment.