Yuzu is a citrus fruit cultivated by farmers, who harvest it each Winter. The harvested Yuzu fruit is either sold as fresh produce or to juicing companies to make Yuzu juice, vinegar or ponzu. After juicing the Yuzu peel remains, and is sold to condiment makers (eg. Yuzu marmalade, Yuzu chili jam) or essential oil producers.
Yuzu Essential Oil Production
Ecologie Shimanto produces Yuzu essential oil by vacuum steam distillation, which produces an oil superior to those produced by solvent extraction or cold pressing. Yuzu Peel is grated and the resulting slurry is then distilled under vacuum, which reduces the boiling point to 60°C; this protects the delicate aromatics in the oil. When distilling Yuzu Essential Oil roughly 300 kg of grated Yuzu Peel are required to make just 2 kg of Yuzu Essential Oil, a lower yield than solvent extraction, but higher than cold-pressing. Distilled Yuzu Essential Oil has a lighter and fresher fragrance than oils produced by the other two methods, and is considered to have a longer shelflife as well.
From its inception Ecology Shimanto has been dedicated to ecologically responsible and sustainable business practices. In addition to the fact that the primary raw material of Yuzu Essential Oil is a by-product of Yuzu juicing, namely the peel, all aspects of production are carefully designed for sustainability.