Adansonia digitata L.
Origin and Geographic Distribution
Baobabs (Adansonia digitata) can be found in Africa South of the Sahara’ Southern and Eastern Africa: Ethiopia (in the South), Eritrea, Kenya, Tanzania, Sudan (in the South), Malawi, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Namibia (in the very North), Angola, Mozambique, Somalia, South Africa (in the North, Limpopo Province) West Africa: Burkina Faso, Kamerun, Tchad, Kongo, Gambia, Ghana, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Togo.
The Baobab is called the Tree of Life by many peoples of Africa because it is such a special tree with so many uses. This is really an icon of Africa. Baobab seed oil is made from the bean-like seeds, covered with a whitish edible powder (Cream of Tartar), within the hard shell covering.
Oil Characteristics and Properties
The oil is quite viscous, with a rich, silky feel and a mild aroma. Baobab oil is an excellent moisturizer and ideal for numerous cosmetic applications. It is one of the few oils which added in its raw state in cosmetic products. Baobab oil is one of the most prominent oils from Africa.
The characteristics has been thoroughly documented and published by I Vermaak from Tshwane University of Technology. The publication appeared in the South African Journal of Botany with title: African seed oils of commercial importance —Cosmetic applications is well worth reading.
Baobab oil is extremely stable with a highly variable shelf life estimated to be between 2 to 5 years.