What is LitSara®
From the sunny slopes in the highlands of Sarawak, comes Sarawak Litsea (Litsea cubeba), a plant well known to the Bidayuh, Kelabit and Lun Bawang communities for its culinary and healing properties.
The essential oil, LitSara® which is extracted from the leaves and fruits has antimicrobial properties that makes it suitable as an active ingredient in personal care products. LitSara® oil, at the right dilution has a pleasant smell which is both refreshing and revitalizing.
The research and development on LitSara® is the pioneering project that provides for benefit sharing with the communities.
Litsea cubeba or the Sarawak Litsea is known as Pahkak to the Bidayuh while the Kelabit and Lun Bawang communities call it Tenem.
Traditionally, these communities use the fruit in their cooking, as medication for stomach ailments and leaves to treat backaches.
It is a small tree which belongs to the Lauraceae family and can be found growing up to 5 - 10 meters tall at heights up to 2,300 meters above sea level.
Presently, fruits from the trees are collected from the wild for essential oil extraction. The communities play an active role in the collection and extraction of essential oil under the Traditional Knowledge Documentation Programme run by the Sarawak Biodiversity Centre.
Trademark and Geographical Indication
The plant Litsea cubeba was registered as a Geographical Indication in Year 2011. Essential oil from Sarawak Litsea is trademarked as LitSara®.