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Characteristics & Socio-economic Impact of Petitgrain Oil Paraguay

Contact Author Raúl Amigo, Director, Amigo & Arditi S.A., Paraguay
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Petitgrain oil Paraguay (Citrus aurantium. var. Paraguay; CAS# 8014-17-3) is widely used in fragrance compositions for all kinds of perfumery products, cosmetics and household chemicals. Its sweet, woody-floral, citrus odor has many applications from Narcisse Noir (created by Caron in 1911) to most popular toiletries, washing products and many others. Its easily obtainable modifications (e.g., no bergaptene, low limonene) extend its range of applications.


It is also an important therapeutic ingredient of aromatherapy mixtures. Valuable in therapy for depression, anxiety and sleeplessness, petitgrain Paraguay also has antimicrobial properties and is used in pharmacy against acne and mycosis, especially in feet. It is listed in British, U.S. and EU Pharmacopeia (ISO Standard 3064:2000. Oil of petitgrain, Paraguayan type (Citrus aurantium L. ssp. aurantium, syn. Citrus aurantium L. ssp. amara var. pumilia).
The weather and temperature of the Eastern (or, Oriental) region of Paraguay are very beneficial for the bitter orange tree (Citrus aurantium ssp.) from which the raw materials are picked for petitgrain oil production. In this region, 80% of the species is cultivated and 20% grows wild.


Paraguay is the main producer of petitgrain oil. The main production departments are San Pedro (accounting for about 92% of production), Canindeyu, Cordillera and Caaguazu.1 The total production of petitgrain oil in Paraguay amounts to 200 tons per year, accounting for more than 80% of global production. About 98% of the production in Paraguay is exported.2

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