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Information @ a  glance

  • Sandalwood's name is derived from the Sanskrit chandana. It has always been valued for its fragrance and its resistance to insects and grew to be a vital accessory in Hindu rituals.
  • Sandalwood is a medium sized evergreen tree with almost dropping branches dark rough bark and sweet scented, fragrant mature wood. Sandalwood is very much indigenous to India. It is cultivated in the states of Karnataka & Tamil nadu and also grows wild in forests of southern India.
  • Sandalwood yields an essential oil. This oil is used to produce soaps, perfumes incense stick cosmetics, beauty aids, medicines. High priced decorative dolls & ornamental pieces are made out of Sandalwood. 


  • Sandalwood is dependent on other plants for minerals and water, but still needs sunlight to make its own sugars, which is why it has green leaves despite having roots which attach themselves to the roots of other plants. There are around 300 species of plant which can be parasitized by sandalwood.
  • Sandalwood is a parasite and needs a host tree to provide water and nutrients via the root system. Usually, the sandalwood tree kills the host, so investment schemes feature a variety of host trees.

        Herbal use

  • Both the Sandalwood & the Sandalwood oil have been used in unani as well as in Ayurveda for many centuries. The wood is bitter sedative cooling and a cardiac tonic. It is very useful in arresting bleeding and in promoting the flow of urine. Sandalwood oil is an akin & mucous membranes.

  • Ancient ayurveda has mentioned use of sandalwood in all types of urinary troubles like burning micturition, urinary tract infection,  oligurea i.e. diminished amount and frequency of urine, dysurea i.e. painful and difficult micturition etc. Sandalwood helps in dilating of the ureters is a general medical observation.

  • On the skin, sandalwood essential oil helps to moisturize and hydrate ageing, dry or flaky skin, relieving itching and inflammation and its astringent action balances oily skin conditions. It has anti phlogiston, antiseptic, anti-spasmodic, carminative, astringent, diuretic, emollient, expectorant, sedative and tonic properties.

      Market & Report

  • Santalum spicatum, the spicy sweet smelling timber that was first exported from Fremantle in the 1840s, is now fetching more than $10,000 a tones for the best quality material.
  • To produce commercially valuable sandalwood with high levels of fragrance oils, harvested santalum trees have to be at least 40 years of age, but 80 or above is preferred. However, inferior sandalwood produced from trees at 30 years old can still fetch a decent price due to the demand for real sandalwood.
  • India and Indonesia are the two major producers and exporters of sandalwood oil but reliable production data are not available. Domestic consumption, which is certainly high in India and probably greater than the combined total for the rest of the world, is therefore also difficult to estimate.
  • USA and France are the two largest importers of Indian sandalwood oil. The market in the Soviet Union has collapsed and imports into the Middle East are increasing.

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