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Enhance the formation of heartwood in sandalwood in Vanuatu

This project aims to identify practical methods to increase heartwood development in Vanuatu sandalwood.
Sandalwood is a valuable, low-volume non-perishable product that is internationally in demand and which Vanuatu can easily export. Wild sandalwood collection has brought needed foreign exchange but demand outstrips supply. A sustainable source of high oil-producing sandalwood in Vanuatu would help satisfy global demand and provide money for rural communities and plantation companies.
The amount of heartwood oil a sandalwood tree produces determines its economic value. This project seeks to produce sandalwood heartwood oil faster through identifying and implementing silviculture treatments, harvesting trees earlier, and increasing the economic value of sandalwood from Vanuatu. This work builds on ACIAR work on sandalwood silviculture and breeding in Vanuatu.
The project expects that Ni-Vanuatu sandalwood growers will be able to harvest their sandalwood trees earlier and with reliable levels of sandalwood oil.