During the war years and immediate post-war period Japan’s forests were horrendously over-logged, and fast-growing species such as Hinoki were used for reforestation. The government is now encouraging culling Hinoki, and replacing it with a wide variety of largely deciduous species, to restore the original biodiversity and beauty to the forests.
Hinoki Essential Oil Production
For a single batch of Hinoki Essential Oil, 200 kg of Hinoki wood chips are placed in a steam distillation unit specially designed for timber, producing roughly 3 kg of oil in one production run.
Ecology Shimanto has a close relationship with a nearby timber mill, and while Hinoki logs are sometimes still used as the raw material, increasingly Hinoki waste from the sawmill is used, and it is hoped that this will become the sole source of raw material in the near future. It should be mentioned that Hinoki is categorized as a near endangered species, but this is in reference to old growth Hinoki, of which very little is left. The Hinoki now being culled under the auspices of the Japanese government is plantation Hinoki, and is the raw material used for Ecologie Shimanto’s Hinoki Essential Oil.