Volatile Solvent Extraction

Aside from steam distillation, it is one of the most commonly used and effective method of obtaining the oils from fragrant ingredients. Plant materials are added to volatile solvents, often petroleum derived, at a low temperature. As the solvent flows over the plants in sealed containers, the fragrant oils are released without the use of harmful heat. The solvent is then evaporated to obtain the concrete – a strongly scented, waxy substance. The concrete is then mixed with alcohol, agitated, filtered and frozen. The alcohol is allowed to evaporate, yielding a rich end-product called the absolute.

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