Our vision for sustainably grown sandalwood is the inspiration behind our innovation
Reaching across each element of growing, harvesting and distilling Indian sandalwood, we are able to trace each step in the life of our trees and verify their authenticity for the benefit of our customers.
By operating a vertically integrated farm, we are not only minimising our impact on the planet but providing transparency to our customers about where their products come from and how they are made.
One of the environmental benefits of farming Indian sandalwood trees is that by virtue of its parasitic nature, Indian sandalwood requires up to four host trees in order to flourish.
The abundant biodiversity that comes with planting various species of trees within the plantation creates a rich eco-system of wild-life and forest-health, which feed each other – a phenomenon not usually associated with plantation farming.
Our sandalwood plantations are irrigated with the water supplied to the Ord River region by the mighty Lake Argyle. Our farms have been strategically positioned to tap into one of Australia’s most abundant water resources, rather than depleting scarce resources or extracting from subterranean artesian wells.
During the Kununurra wet season, enough fresh water to supply Perth for 10 years is captured by the Lake Argyle system. Between October and February, the gates to Lake Argyle open, allowing roughly 2,500 gigalitres of water a day to pass through, whilst limiting flooding of adjacent land.
During the dry season the gates close to allow for water storage and diversion to the irrigation channel, ensuring a year- round supply of water.
Heartwood is leading the charge as one of the first clean beauty brands in Australia to be Climate Active Certified for business operations.
Climate Active represents a commitment between the government, companies, and consumers to maintain the authenticity of carbon neutral claims. Our emission reduction strategy involves taking action to minimise our carbon footprint and invest in verified Carbon Offset projects to balance carbon emissions.
Our harvesting operations are managed in partnership with the local indigenous community – providing stable employment opportunities to East Kimberley locals. Once harvested, sapwood is removed and finished by hand, to ensure that no heartwood - the oil-bearing part of the tree, is overlooked.
Very few commercial operators in the fragrant wood industry de-sap by hand when processing sandalwood due to the cost of labour, preferring to use machinery to unearth the heartwood. Removing the sapwood by hand eliminates wastage and has allowed us to reduce energy consumption by 70%.
Indian sandalwood is steam-distilled at our in-house distillation facility using purified rainwater. Removing sapwood by hand has reduced the amount of sapwood in the distillation process, resulting in a 33% reduction in water usage and a higher-quality hydrosol by-product.