Rose Pricing

Discussion in 'General' started by Mr.P, Feb 16, 2019.

  1. Al Shareef Oudh

    Al Shareef Oudh Resident Artisan

    Nice Summary Micheal, I just want to add a couple more points to what you noted down.

    A. Not all rose otto are the same. For example in Ta'if a large number of the distillers will distil the petals once, then fill the pot up with hydrosol and distil the same petals again. The first and second run is mixed and sold as Taifi rose oil. We and some other distillers distil the petals once and fill it with new petals each time. The price difference is nearly double. Whilst they are both rose oil, both solidify etc, there is a quality difference to the trained nose.

    In Nangarhar they don't double distil, however there are two companies one uses the Bulgarian setup, they produce more oil from 1 tone of petals so their price is less per toola. Our producer uses a hybrid system and it treated the petals more delicately with lower pressure and temperature, resulting in less oil per tone, but much more higher quality.

    So there is a difference in the product even though the names are the same.
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  2. Micheal76y

    Micheal76y Whats this Oud About?

    i received am email by ensar oud company in which the admin explained abt ml and gram. less viscous oil and viscous oil

    if viscosity is less, then 3 grams will be around 3.7 or 4ml, and 2.5 ml will be around 2 or 2.1 gram, i think. is it so?

    if it's so, then rising phoenix' is high coz he/she is giving more mls.

    now i will write to imperial oud company to ask about its rose oil. esp abt what al sharif oudh posted, distillation etc. i thought oils are distilled by these companies. now i'm thinking these companies buy from other big companies. is there any company on the forum which distills rose?
  3. powdernose

    powdernose Admin & Oud Sprite Staff Member

    Aside from what @Al Shareef Oudh mentioned, access to the product and rarity of the product, have an impact on price.
    And then of course different markups, which can be the most significant factor.
    Also age affects price. A rose otto depreciates with age. Sometimes you will see the previous year's stock being discounted before the new season's production

    I'll just mention the two extremes of the examples above,
    If (and I only say if because I haven't tried it yet) what @Ulugbek Abdumominov provides is as good as it seems, then it is a very good price, because the wholesale price is very good and the markup is very decent.
    If (and I only say if because I haven't tried it) what @Elixir Attar provides is as advertised, then it makes sense that it would be the most expensive of these products, because enfleurage is a very labour and time intensive process and there are less guarantees things will go well. It is also a rare product.

    No. Why did you think that?
    I don't think any of the vendors claimed that.

    If you wanted, you could also look beyond oud vendors for rose oil.
    The search would broaden your scope.
    In my humble opinion, some markups often seem steep.

    No, viscosity is not directly related to density.
    Oud oil generally has a specific gravity around ~0.95.
    In fact the last time I weighed the volume of an oud (which was of medium viscosity if it matters to you), the density was 97+g/ml if I recall,
    which is as close to a one for one conversion as I personally care for.
    If it really matters to you, for price comparisons, you could rather safely get an estimate by multiplying the ml oil by a factor of 0.95 and you'd be close enough. My advice is to not bother much.
    The main reason for preferring grams over mls is for precision. One can weigh out an oil to a greater degree of precision.
    When working volumetrically you will struggle to be precise. Not that it equates to a negative, mind you.
    The last time I ordered a 1/4 tola (2.83g) from a seller who obviously portioned out vollumetrically, I ended up with 3.15 grams of oud. A good seller mostly errs on the safe side (which is true regardless of whether they weigh or use mls)
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  4. Mr.P

    Mr.P Oud Fan

    I agree that the whole “mass versus volume” in oud purchasing is overstated, and was in part just a stunt used by certain folks to attempt to besmirch the reputation of others. At least that was the discussion i saw going down. Still, if one is willing to pay $5000 for a bottle of oud, a discrepancy of 5% comes to $250... that’s worth considering.

    Rose pricing is funny. I get the impression the markup is HUGE for most resellers (not including obscure rare vintage artisanal rose oils, if such a thing exists). I know this because you can buy very fine rose oil directly from Bulgarian cooperatives, and some folks in the US are charging for 2ml what can get you at least 10ml if you just bypass the absurd 500% markup.

    Honestly I would not feel comfortable paying $15 per gram for non-organic Turkish rose oil, which I have found to generally be second rate (maybe just bad purchase luck). I once sampled a Turkish oil produced in a single batch in a copper still from a family farm and that was every bit as good as the Bulgarian.

    Organic Bulgarian from Alteya Organics is about $22 per gram right now if you buy 10g, if you want a reasonable starting point that is not inflated beyond recognition. Anything more than this I’d expect to have an amazing pedigree! Regular Bulgarian is around $17/g
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2019
  5. powdernose

    powdernose Admin & Oud Sprite Staff Member

    There is no discrepancy, each is sold in its own unit.
    Converting everything to $/g can be an illustrative comparative tool, but at the end of the day when it comes to real life buying choices it is of more limited usefulness.

    There is no good reason why a Turkish rose could not be as good as a Bulgarian.

    Thanks for mentioning another option.
    I've not tried them myself.

    Of course it is worth mentioning that if you buy at the minimum quantity it comes to 24$/ml,
    and that the specific gravity of rose otto is ~0.85,
    and that you can't buy by a single ml.

    I've noticed prices for a good otto hover about the 30$/ml level,
    and rarer articles can go at 45+$/ml
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  6. Mr.P

    Mr.P Oud Fan

    I am sure I’ve just had bad luck with Turkish oils. I’ve smelled maybe 5 or 6, most had a kind of sweaty and mineral note that I don’t enjoy. They were relatively “heavy” roses without a lot of sparkle. Apologies for generalizing too broadly from my limited experience. The one really good specimen I mentioned was as appealing to me as any otto I’ve smelled.
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  7. Fahad

    Fahad Oud Fan

    That's very interesting to know. I came across a vid on line vis a vis rose production mentioning the cost of a 1000 flower heads as 60 riyals. So if about 12000 to 15000 are needed for a tola, that would raise the price for this method of adding a fresh batch up approx 800 SAR (for just the additional flowers) plus other associated costs. In general Taifi sells anywhere between 1500 to 2500 SAR/Tola. So adding the additional cost would make it range between 2300 SAR to 3300 SAR. From a range of 34$-57$ per ml to $52-$75 per ml

    I do have a question as I came across some online content stating that the number of roses added does not really make the oil more concentrated but simply increases the quantity.If that is true then if cooking up approx 12000 flower renders a Tola wouldn't adding a fresh batch for cohobation simply increase the amount of the oil to 2 Tolas? Also I assume you add the hydrosol as well along with the fresh batch? In order to avoid any misunderstanding not looking to critique only to learn.

    Another point of interest was an innovative distillation setup by the Rashid al qurashi factory where they've custom built a 300,000 rose capacity stainless steel pot which is mostly automated with a compressor to adjust pressure. As per their videos, the oil is cleaner, distillation happens at about 60 degrees due to the low pressure where as with the conventional copper pots its around normal boiling temperature. Would be interesting to compare copper Taifi with stainless steel.

    disclaimer ** Some of the above is from you tube content.
    Last edited: May 4, 2019
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  8. Al Shareef Oudh

    Al Shareef Oudh Resident Artisan

    Nothing wrong with enquiring or even critique and it's most welcome.

    I know in the last couple of years some of the distillers and new distillers more specifically are building distilleries focused on modern and more volume efficient stills. The 300k rose petal capacity is an example of that. When placing large quantities of rose in a chamber it will require a lot more pressure and temperature to extract the oils out.

    The traditional Small setups which run 20k-40k petals run with near zero back pressure and the temperature is 50C.

    The newer systems have higher pressure and that will result in more than just the oil making its way across in the distillation process.

    According to local practice in the traditional way the best quality rose oil comes from 40 thousand roses that are not distilled more than 2 times. For every 40 thousand rose batch (20 thousand roses x 2), only a toola (11.7 grams) of rose oil is extracted. This is the highest quality of rose oil.

    Bad quality rose oil comes from batches of roses that are boiled multiple times to make up the tola of oil.

    The price breakdown you provide again will depend on the oil, price on its own doesn't really give clear perspective whether the oil is worth it or not. For example if one toola is made from 40k petals vs 20k cooked two times or 10k petals cooked 4 times, all are one toola of oil, but the quality is markedly different.
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  9. Fahad

    Fahad Oud Fan

    Thanks for responding and sharing information brother Shareef. Really appreciate it.: )

    There's a few points which really stand out for me and I'd like to cross check them with you.

    No. of flower heads:

    - To sum up what you are sharing so I am sure I understand correctly:
    A tola can be cooked from a varied number of petals and one important factor in quality is the number of flower heads used to make up a Tola.​

    - Summing up what I've deduced from interviews (on you tube e.g. sokkat al teeb) of people visiting distillers in Taif:
    A tola only comes from a range of 12k to 17k flower heads as the amount of oil distilled is proportional to the amount contained in the flower heads.
    So what I'm hearing being said by these distillers/interviewers is that the no. of flowers used does not impact quality as such since the quantity of oil in a tola by default comes from anywhere between that range of flower heads. Adding flowers to the pot would simply increase the oil quantity. So by cooking up 40k instead of 20 for instance the resulting otto in the receiving flask would be about around 2 to 3 tolas.

    Pressure and temperature:

    You mentioned 'traditional setups run 20k-40k petals with near zero back pressure and the temperature is 50C' and 'newer systems have higher pressure'

    Regarding this one of the distillers mentioned normal boiling temperature for traditional setups. Sorry I have no distillation background, so just wondering: If there is near zero back pressure and assuming water is at a constant boil during the distillation wouldn't this be at 100 degrees celsius as a minimum throughout?

    Regarding the 300k setup the technician mentioned and showed a compressor that lowered the pressure in the pot thereby reducing the boiling point of water to around 60 C. The traditional setups in the videos do not seem to have any pressure adjustment mechanism.

    Unfortunately these are seemingly opposing facts regarding no. of flowers used, temperature and pressure. Either the facts as stated are incorrect or they can be reconciled and/or my understanding is deficient... Whatever the case would be glad to stand corrected!
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  10. Al Shareef Oudh

    Al Shareef Oudh Resident Artisan

    I think you might have missed my point regarding the numbers. Whether you take 12K - 17K of petals or 20K of petals, in one run they wont produce one toola of Ta'ifi rose otto. 20k petals will produce about 1/2 toola of rose otto. If you cook the same 20k again then you will get the toola. Likewise where they mention 12-17k petals, those petals would be cooked more than once to produce one toola. Also to keep in mind the output decreases as does the quality each other time that the those same petals are cooked again.

    Basically in the older setups what happens is the petals go in, and the pots can handle 10k, 15K, 20 K, there are also some that do take the 40K but the locals prefer to do a maximum of 2ok batches. Then hydrosol from the previous year or previous run is added, 50L for 20K, they run for 6-7 hours, and produce ~ 1/2 toola of oil. Then hydrosol is adding again and cooked again to get the other ~1/2 toola.

    To help you reconcile the numbers, depending on the temperature and pressure, you can squeeze more out of the petals, the figures I am sharing with you is what our tribe and my cousins in Ta'if do.

    The highest quality known and nukhbat al aroos for one toola, they cook the 40k roses once, either in one pot or two separate pots and its cooked once.

    As with regards the pressure, imagine your pressure cooker at home if you heat water in it without the lid the steam will just raise into the air and there isnt any push back. However once you put the lid on, even if you dont put the weight on you will have backward pressure, restricting the steam to come out only from the little valve. The new 3ook systems are like the pressure cooker where the steam is either force or restricted, where as the traditional system the steam is not restricted.

    Please see below I had posted this some years ago on BN;
    This tube directs the steam through a cooling tank filled with water. The distillate condenses and runs down into a large glass tear shaped bottle, where it begins to separate into rose water and oil. In this first run, only half a tola is produced from 20 thousand roses. Please see blow

    In the older systems the water does not boil, it is kept at low temperature to preserve the petals. Its more like steaming than boiling.

    The new large scale systems, there are two main types, steam is generated in the different chamber and pumped through the chamber that holds the petals, or the tanks are loaded with water the petals go into the same tank and then the pressure is restricted until they get oil flow. The issue with these big setups is caking. Imagine the weight of all the petals sitting on one another all compressed together, now imagine will the steam or water reach every petal?
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  11. Fahad

    Fahad Oud Fan

    Thank you brother Shareef I had overlooked the double distillation point when considering how many petals are used to get a tola. The information I came across indicated around 12k distilled twice in the way you mentioned to get a tola. What you are saying would imply the output would be less than a tola and that it would have to be distilled more than twice to get atleast a tola since approx 20k done twice renders a tola.

    Makes sense the quality becomes inferior if the same roses are distilled numerous times. I wonder if that is how ASAQ and others have different grades depending on how many petals went in to the pot and how many times they were cooked to get the amount that was produced.

    So Nakhbat al aroos is the highest grade which by definition is 40k cooked once. What your family does that of cooking 20k and adding a fresh set of 20k for the second run quality wise seems to almost be the same thing. Isn't it? Is it also called Nakhbat al aroos? Are there other standardized names for inferior grades. I once got hold of a bottle from the qadi family. It had Nakhb awwal written on it. That must be an inferior grade then.
    Since we are on the subject of pricing. Could I ask what in general is a fair price for nakhbat al aroos or what is the price range locally? I imagine the $400 / Tola benchmark mentioned in articles/videos is not for nakhbat al aroos but for a lesser grade.

    Wanted to inquire about the hydrosol as well as I think it comes in two grades? Maiatil aroos (hydrosol from first run) and alsino (from second run). What I think we get in markets, rose water from Iran usually is al sino, it's cheap around $5 a bottle. How much does Maiatil aroos cost usually?

    Thanks for explaining about the pressure and temperature variables. Hope to study it more and comment later.
    Last edited: May 10, 2019
  12. Fahad

    Fahad Oud Fan

    Any update on when this years lot will be available?:handsopen:

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