CAS Number: 8002-73-1 ; 90045-89-9
FEMA Number: 2830
EINECS Number: 289-954-9
Paras Code: PAO2042
Orris roots [Family: Iridaceae] are native to Southern Europe, and became naturalized in Iran and northern India. It has been identified in wall paintings of Egypt temple dating as back as 1500 BC. It was at one time used as a purgative, but it is not used medicinally. In the Fragrance and Flavor industry, the Orris extracts are processed from the roots, called rhizomes. The roots of the European Iris species, Iris germanica, Iris florentina, and Iris pallida are collectively known as Orris Roots. Rhizomes' maturation drive the development of irones, which characterize the powdery notes of Orris. The higher the content of irones is, the more powerful will be the powdery notes. The primary countries producing the absolute are Italy, Morocco and China. The annual crop is harvested between from July to September.
The root of the world
Iris is derived from a Greek word which means rainbow and messenger. The Greek goddess Iris is said to have appeared in the form of a rainbow delivering divine messages from the gods to the mortals. The French people prefer to call it fleur-de-lys, which long ago became stylised and adopted as an emblem of the French monarchy.
Distillation of the roots yields an essential oil that becomes solid at room temperature. This is called
Orris Butter or
Orris concrete. Absolute is obtained by an additional purifying process to get a pure concentrated irone.
Powdery, floral, green-woody and reminiscent of violet flower, Orris extracts can be used in perfumery as well as in flavours, especially in red fruit notes such as raspberry.
Orris has been shown to purify blood, stimulate appetite and aid digestion. It is also indicated to relieve headache and migraine symptoms, toothache, muscle and joint pain and help treat skin diseases. Orris Absolute is used as a flavoring agent and as an ingredient in perfumes. It can also have uses in many cosmetic and skin care products like body lotions.