The quality of essential oils is determined by a number of factors which have an effect on the growth of plants, the time and manner of harvesting the raw material, the method of essential oil extraction, the means of storage as well as by the control exercised over essential oil products.
-The controlled optimization of the variety structure is one of the factors determining the production of high quality essential oils.
-Essential oil plants should be grown in accordance with the high demands of agro-biological science. Preference should be given to organic methods because they can ensure that the essential oil does not contain undesirable substances.
-Harvesting the raw material should be done in strict compliance with the recommendations concerning collection time, season, time of day, etc.
-The raw materials should be properly prepared for processing.
-The quality of essential oils depends very much on the method of obtaining them.
-Friendly production methods guarantee high quality essential oils.
-In trade, typified lots are used, composed of lavender oils from various regions depending on their organoleptic, physical and chemical indicators. The global market of essential oils has adopted three main types of lavender oil depending on the content of esters:
Lavender oil – type Barreme, contains about 50% esters and is considered the most high-quality oil with 38-42% esters /Mont Blanc and Mont Ventoux/ with subtypes with 38-40% and 40-42% esters, and essential oil with less than 38% esters, which is most often used for medicinal purposes. The lavender oil produced by Alpha Lavender belongs to the first type – Barreme oil.
The fragrance of lavender oil depends not only on its ester content, but also on the ratio of its components. Quality oils are those containing up to 10% carbonyl compounds and a ratio between common esters and lavandulyl acetate ≥ 4.5. The essential oils manufactured by Alpha Lavender have the highest fragrance rate regarding the ratio between linalool and linalyl acetate: 0.7-0.8:1. In some countries (France, Iceland, Italy) significant amounts of lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) and Spike (Lavandula spica) oils are manufactured. Lavandin essential oil is obtained from the flowers of the plant Lavandula hybrida – a hybrid of lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) and Spike (Lavandula spica). Lavandin oil has a pungent lavender smell and a strong camphoric smell. It is used as a cheap substitute for lavender oil in technology for perfuming technical products and inexpensive perfume series. The low perfume quality of this essential oil is due to the high content of camphor, cineole and borneol.