About Argan Oil
You have seen it in many products and you have heard people speak of it. But what is Argan Oil?
When learning about Argan Oil, it is important to understand its rich history. Argan Oil is a rare and precious commodity. It has been used in the beauty rituals of Moroccan women since antiquity. Argan trees grow in the semi-desert area of south western Morocco. They produce fruit smaller than apricots.
Goats love this fruit and find it so delicious that they will climb the prickly Argan trees to eat it. In the past, the pits from the goat’s droppings were cracked open and the kernels inside were pressed to make Argan Oil. The journey through the digestive system of a goat is not a necessary step in making quality Argan Oil. So we at Saadia Organics leave this (unsanitary) step out. However, it does make for an interesting fact.
Goats also damage Argan trees as they climb them. All of our Argan Oil comes from goat-free farms.
How it’s made:
Despite its naturally nutty aroma, Argan Oil is not made from a nut at all. Argania spinosa trees are fruit bearing, and Argan Oil is made from the kernel inside of the pit of the fruit. This product is nut-free.
The extraction of the oil from that kernel inside the fruit is done by hand at Saadia Organics by Saadia herself and her hardworking team of women. This hand extraction process is very time consuming.
The fruit of the Argan tree is green in early spring. It then turns gold and falls from the tree. It is then picked and opened. The outer layer of fruit is often given to local goats and the pits are removed and dried in the sun.
Then the hard work begins. Each pit is cracked between two stones. The kernels are then removed, crushed in a mortar with a pestle, and then ground into a thick paste by hand with a stone quern. The paste is then squeezed by hand to produce the oil. The solid part of the paste is used as animal feed or a type of soap.
There are two varieties of Argan Oil. Some is for culinary purposes and some is for cosmetic use. If the oil is to be used in cuisine, the kernels are roasted before grinding. This brings out the delicious nutty flavour in the oil. Roasted kernels produce a lot more oil than unroasted kernels. This is why culinary Argan Oil is less expensive than cosmetic.
Argan Oil for cosmetic use is made from raw, unroasted pits. It too has a slightly nutty aroma when you first apply it. But that scent disappears within a few minutes.
Note: Beware of “deodorized” Argan Oil. The process used to take the natural aroma out of the oil is said to damage the amazing abilities of pure untouched Argan Oil. Saadia Organics is proud to only offer you the most natural, authentic product possible.
Argan Oil is made of unsaturated fatty acids, Vitamin E/tocopherols, squalene and sterols. Each of these components is unique and useful for different reasons. Some act as antioxidants. Others help with chronic inflammation. Some properties are even known for their ability to protect against skin cancer and for being anti-tumorigenic. Check out this site for more detailed information.