engage your senses

The potent appeal of patchouli

Arguably one of the most sensual scents on earth, the deep, earthy, woody notes of patchouli are found in some the world’s most famous fragrances.

From fine fragrances like Opium by YSL to major fabric care creations, all are inspired by patchouli’s, strong, earthy character. From Victorian times to the hippy movement, patchouli has never lost its appeal: Givaudan perfumers love to work with this precious natural, trying new combinations which break with convention and reveal its pure beauty, making it relevant for today.      

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HeSoon and Jacques

Walk through the patchouli fields with our perfumers

Perfumers Jacques and HeSoon are so passionate about patchouli they have made it their creative vocation. 

Jacques says: “Add patchouli to a fragrance and it starts to ‘vibrate’ - it’s like a heartbeat, bringing a scent to life.”



    Why our passion for patchouli makes us a partner of choice

    Being an expert in patchouli means always delivering a material of high quality, and showing customers how to work with it in exciting new ways.

    In Malaysia, we have a dedicated partnership that combines a plantation and a distillery on the same premises. By growing the plant and extracting the patchouli oil in the same place, we can develop very unique, special quality oils exclusively for use by Givaudan perfumers. Customers can then be inspired by these oils to develop new patchouli creations

    Innovating in patchouli means anticipating the needs around this raw material, now, and in the future. 

    As patchouli is used in fine fragrance and in consumer products, it is always in demand. To ensure supply and quality never stalls, we established a collection network in Indonesia buying patchouli directly from local, known producers. We offer training schemes to help growers and distillers optimise quality and yield.  More importantly, we create a direct regular outlet for their patchouli crops and oil.

    Creativity in patchouli means leveraging our secure supply of this fragrant plant to unleash our perfumers’ artistic expression. 

    Giving our head perfumers the best possible materials to work with inspires them to dream up exciting new accords that show off this bewitching and sensual scent. By redefining patchouli and rediscovering its potential we can surprise consumers with exquisite new blends and bring innovative fragrance possibilities to the market.    

    Securing a sustainable patchouli oil supply



    Mystical and poetic; learn about the role we play in the patchouli world


    Ethical sourcing programme

    Sustainable actions such as these are a result of our ‘Ethical sourcing’ programme, whereby we selected special ingredients to protect and nurture over the long-term. This programme recognises the importance of maintaining the world’s supplies of unique raw materials. By operating sustainable business models involving people, products, the environment and society, the future of these resources can blossom.

    Read more about our other ethical sourcing programmes below:

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