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Finding Namibian Desert Gold

Every day we celebrate the uniqueness and diversity of Africa.

I am particularly very fond of a very special ingredient I formulate with. I call it Desert Gold of Namibia or it can even be referred to as Namibian Desert Amber. Commiphora wildii or ‘Namibian Myrrh’ (or Omumbiri) has been used for many years by OvaHimba women as their traditional perfume. This near endemic plant’s resin is collected during the hot, dry months when the resin is naturally exuded in the Desert. The resin is collected at buying points in the conservancies, packed into containers and transported to a community Processing Facility.

The resin broken into small pieces and steam distilled. A very unique and distinct essential oil is extracted from the resin to produce a very distinctive fragrance, found nowhere else in the world. Namibian Myrrh essential oil.

People living in the Kunene Damaraland Region are semi-nomadic pastoralists dependent on subsistence livestock farming. They are therefore vulnerable to drought conditions and environmental change. Income derived from the sale of plant material and products provides a very important source of supplementary income that makes a significant contribution to improving their livelihoods.

It has taken me some time to formulate with Namibian Desert Gold as I wanted to capture the essence of the Kunene Damaraland Region in Namibia so that the full essence of this Namibian Desert can be experienced with all 6 senses. From customer reviews, it is noticeable for the scarce Namibian Myrrh essential oil being described as "totally captivating" and "without an equal".

Photo credits: Kunene Conservancies Indigenous Natural Products Trust


North-West Province

South Africa

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