Argan oil is now the world’s most expensive edible oil. It has an approximate value of $300 per liter. With all the organizations working in argan oil, NGOs, private companies, the government, Morocco seemed to have an economic boost. It is said that the production of argan oil in Morocco has helped alleviate families and has help children, especially girls, to go to school. This is a rise against poverty. This has also helped families to widen their livestock of goats. Most families rely on goats for their living. For an economy like Morocco’s this publicity is a real turn of events. This will help change people’s lives. This will help create opportunities for people to have a job, or maybe buy and build their own Argan tree farm. The sustenance of argan trees is very minimal. There is no need for sensitive treatments as they are strong to stand by themselves.
Argan trees’ structure is like a rope not tightly clutched together. Its branches bind each other in twirls. In this way, goats can climb up the tree and eat the nuts. This is one of the problems scientists see with this type of commercial boom. With more and more people having the capital to buy more goats, more and more goats are climbing up these trees and damaging its trunks and eating its nuts that is why it is somehow a negative thing to have goats in your argan tree farm. Goats are the primary threat for argan trees. Also, with people wanting more nuts to sell and produce, they are also being aggressive on the trees. They are applying harsh harvesting techniques that are proven to harm the branches of the trees and even affect the following year’s production.
What is more dangerous are the policies that were set on these argan trees. They are expected to produce argan oils for the whole year with all of the world’s needs, which is a little tough for a few trees located at the southern part of Morocco. Scientists from the University of California, Lybbert and his team studied the societal interaction between people and the trees. They fear that instead of helping the community, this type of demand might even help the degradation of argan trees.
The policies that are formed for these trees are just economically biased and did not have any type of reference to any research that would support the activities that are being done in Morocco. What if we push it further and further until we bring argan trees’ demise? Because of the careless formation of the policies that are supposed to ‘protect’ these trees, they are now the results of a greedy economy. They call it a ‘win-win’ situation but that will only prove to be true if we are talking about the people selling the nuts of the argan tree and the corporations responsible for the production of the final product, argan oil. We have to make a compromise now or else we might lose one of the world’s oldest living specie on the planet.