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Information @ a Glance

General

  • Balsam is an oily, resinous, and odorous substance, which flows spontaneously or by incision from certain plants, and which the Church mixes with olive oil for use as chrism.
  • Balsam fir (Abies balsamea) is one of the more important conifers in the northern United States and in Canada. Within its range it may also be referred to as balsam, Canadian balsam, eastern fir, and bracted balsam fir.

Uses

  • It is a small to medium-sized tree used primarily for pulp and light frame construction, and it is one of the most popular Christmas trees. Wildlife rely extensively on this tree for food and shelter.
  • Balsam fir is pulped by all of the pulping processes. Sulfate and semichemical processes are used most extensively. A fiber length of 3 to 4 mm A 12 to 0.16 in) is good, as is fiber quality. Because balsam fir is less dense than other major pulpwood species, its yield is lower

Market

  • Annual world production (1981) of Tolu balsam is about 65 tonnes of which El Salvador exports 48 tonnes or 74 percent. The price of Peru balsam is US$ 1.30-2.40 per 0.5 kg (1 lb), and roughly half the world's production is exported to the USA.
  • The balsam aroma is a popular fragrance worldwide, particularly in the perfume and fragrance industries. The U.S. market for the product has been estimated to be about 18,000 to 36,000 kg annually, valued at about US$325,000 to $650,000.

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