CENSO Lavande

Filière des huiles essentielles françaises de lavande et lavandin

CENSO Lavande

An essential sector

Research oriented on environmental preservation

For around ten years, professionals have been prioritizing research actions to improve the impact of production and distillation on the environment.


The production of lavender and lavandin is perfectly adapted to its soil, where, due to pedo-climatic conditions and economic reasons, there are few alternative agricultural productions. Lavender and lavandin crops are non-irrigated crops which therefore do not impact the level of ground water. Moreover, producers use few phytosanitary products.

The organic farming share is also considerably higher than the national average of agricultural productions.

A privileged habitat for bees, lavender and lavandin fields are necessary for the development of local beekeeping. Farmers and beekeepers discuss the mutual practices to be privileged for keeping the bee populations in the area.


Essential oils are made by producers in distilleries which are often collectively managed as CUMA (Coopérative d’Utilisation de Matériel Agricole) or in cooperatives. Research at present carried out regarding mechanization and distillation processes have the primary aim of decreasing energy consumption during distillation. As an example, we can quote the development of a new cutting tool which makes it possible to considerably lower the quantity of vegetable mass distilled without affecting the essential oil yield. An energy saving of 30 to 40 % is expected thanks to this programme.

Other works relative to the development an ecovaporator for distilleries. This is for testing a technique which is already used in water desalination and which consists of making the hot water into steam as it leaves the condensers. Besides the energy gain, the interest is that a boiler can operate a much more powerful appliance than its own power.

The co-products generated are moreover entirely upgradable: the straw can be composted or energetically upgraded; the hydrolates can be incorporated into cosmetic products.

The proximity of the stakeholders, geographically concentrated over 4 departments in the South-East of France, makes it possible to reduce the impact of transport on the environment. The first processing of the production is carried out in distilleries near the fields.

(Source : Stratégie de développement durable de la filière des huiles essentielles de lavande et de lavandin « Une filière au cœur de ses territoires », Onippam/FranceAgriMer, Avril 2008)


the participation of

France AgriMer

Comité Interprofessionnel des Huiles Essentielles Françaises

Les Quintrands - Route de Volx 04100 Manosque, France
Tél. : +334 92 87 38 09

Réalisation : Stratis

Comité Interprofessionnel des Huiles Essentielles Françaises
Les Quintrands - Route de Volx 04100 Manosque
Tél. : 04 92 87 38 09