Palo Santo Reforestation Program: a visionary project
Ten years ago it started an investigation about the history and properties of the Palo Santo tree located in Puerto Lopez County, in the Manabi Province. Nowadays, at that same place there’s an interesting reforestation project taking place, which is trying to rescue the forgotten tradition of planting for tomorrow.
Unlike other species, the Palo Santo must fall by its own in order to extract the Palo Santo Essential oilsand also get incense stickswhich are used in aromatherapy. In this process not a single tree is cut down, doing so causes it to lose its properties. The wood that falls is what The ArtisanPaloSanto EcuadorianHands uses to manufacture the products, and despite the fact that we don’t deforest, we do feel the responsibility to return to nature those fallen trees.
We therefore support the Reforestation Project in Puerto Lopez, through a percentage of money generated by the sale of the products of Palo Santo, which is goes directly to the project. This funding enabled the creation of a greenhouse 6 years ago. Since then an estimated 40,000 trees have been planted. Many of these have been delivered to schools, colleges, institutions, Municipality of Puerto Lopez and even the Machalilla National Park, while the rest have given to people in a more individually way.
In addition to helping preserve the environment, the sale of Palo Santo has allowed the training of artisans who work in the whole process of production of the various items. There are about 25 people who receive a fair salary and claim to be happy with their work situation and committed to deliver a quality product.
The ultimate goal is to be able to create a forest of Palo Santo for everyone, which will generate oxygen and household work for the local people. Artisans are the ones who will execute the project and thus must continue their training and develop a culture of long-term preservation. All these activities are very important to secured the long-lasting supply of this natural Essential oil.
At the moment we are working on the paperwork and all the necessary permits to keep detailed records of all the advancements of the program. However, in the future customers who purchase Palo Santo products will be certain of their support to the environment through a satellite map which will show the places where the trees are being replanted.
What we have outlined here is a visionary project, the path is not easy, but it is important that we support the work of the craftsmen who still live in harmony with nature and take care of our only home, Earth.