Lemons in Italy can grow to be the size of softballs, thriving in the warm climate and fertile soil. Most of the lemons sourced for our essential oil are from the island of Sicily.
A small portion of our lemons are sourced in southern Brazil. The climate is similar to that of southern Italy, and citrus fruits—including lemons—thrive.
The cleansing, purifying, and invigorating properties of Lemon make it one of the most versatile oils, not to mention the top-selling essential oil that doTERRA offers.
How does it work?
The essential oil is in the peel of the fruit. The processing of Lemon essential oil, similar to the processing of many other citrus oils, is a by-product of the fresh fruit industry. Fresh lemons that cannot be sold to the fresh market because of bruising or other aesthetic deficiencies are pressed for juice and essential oil, which are later separated. The juice and oil provide a dual use for leftover fruit.
The oil comes from “rasping” the peel (similar to a cheese grater that scratches the peel) on special equipment. The rasping equipment is submerged in water, just enough to cover the blades, and as it scratches the peel, the oil is released into the water. The fruit comes out looking like a small, fuzzy ball with the peel completely removed. The oil is then separated from the water in a centrifuge, where it is processed at least twice. The fruit is juiced after the peel/oil have been removed.
Farmers usually belong to a cooperative. The farmer will sell the fruit to the cooperative (or a private company), who will then separate the fruit based on quality (size, color, shape) for the fresh fruit market or juice. Our partners buy the fruit from the cooperative or private companies to process the oil or juice.
Sustaining Long-Term Partnerships
We are proud to maintain long-term relationships with suppliers in both Italy and Brazil, who in turn are able to provide steady income for the farmers from whom they purchase their fruit.