Argan oil is one of those countable natural essential oils that have great say in the world market because of they can be efficiently used for so many purposes. They are not just a cure to any one ailment but can even work as enhancers to many needful places on the human body.
For centuries before modern times, the Berbers (indigenous people of Morocco) of this area would collect undigested argan pits from the waste of goats which climb the trees to eat their fruit. The pits were then ground and pressed to make the nutty oil used in cooking and cosmetics. However, the oil used in products available for sale today has most likely been harvested and processed with machines in a verifiably clean and sanitary way, namely -
The oil was sold in Moroccan markets even before the Phoenicians arrived, yet the hardy argan tree has been slowly disappearing. Overgrazing by goats and a growing, wood-hungry local population have whittled the number of surviving trees down to less than half of what it was 50 years ago. The tree is a relic of the Earth’s Tertiary Period, which ended about 1.6 million years ago, and it grows in only a few other places in the world. It is tenacious, withering and fruitless during extended droughts, and it lives as long as 200 years.
Argan oil is used for dipping bread, on couscous, salads and similar uses. “Amlou” a thick brown paste with a consistency similar to peanut butter is produced by stone grinding roasted almond and Argan oil and is considered a favorite local bread dip. The unroasted oil is traditionally used as a treatment for skin diseases, and has found favour with the cosmetics industry.
Supporting Women All argan sold today is produced by a women’s cooperative that shares the profits among the local women of the Berber tribe. The cooperative has established an ecosystem reforestation project so that the supply of argan oil will not run out and the income that is currently supporting the women will not disappear. The money is providing healthcare and education to the local women, and supporting the entire community as a whole.
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