Should you care where your charcoal comes from? If you can get good priced high-quality natural charcoal from places that renew their forests, why not? In the end, the power is in the consumer's hands.
Real barbeque connoisseurs know that the best charcoal comes from slow-growing hardwood trees. The largest producers are countries like Paraguay, Nigeria, Namibia and Vietnam. Exports go to developed countries such as Spain, Germany, Belgium, Brazil and Israel.
In recent years there's been growing consumer awareness that some of these countries are destroying large tracts of their tropical hardwood forests in order to produce and export charcoal. This has prompted consumers to prefer buying their charcoal from sources where trees are replanted, and Nature is re-invested and not robbed.
Greed and ignorance
The statistics are daunting. There are several world regions with the highest deforestation triggered by unsustainable charcoal production. Africa is No.1 with 29,760 square kilometers stripped away per year. South America is second with 5,100 square kilometres per year.
Asia is third with 2,400 square kilometres per year.
In South American, Paraguay is particularly bad. Some 250,000 square kilometers used to be covered in forest. Now that number has been reduced by 44% to 140,000 square kilometers. The Chaco tropical forests that stretch across the country are being decimated. They have the dense, slow-growing hardwood trees that provide the best high-quality charcoal. It burns hot with little smoke and is a consumer favorite. Cut everything. Replant nothing.
Can anything be done?
What are the ways to turn away from this negative trend? Various governments are trying to encourage people to replant trees or move to other forms of energy than burning charcoal. However, the read pressure must come from consumer demand. If a country is trashing its forests for charcoal production, avoid their products.
We discovered Vietnam as a producer of high quality charcoal after a long international search that took us to Cuba, Paraguay, Nigeria and Namibia as well. These countries are considered the world's leading producers of the best original charcoal.
In contrast to others, the Vietnamese care greatly about sustaining their forests. The sources for charcoal come from their huge orchards of hardwood trees - Khaya, Coffee, Lychee and Longan (like lychee).
We only use the wood that remains at the end of the harvest season and when old trees are replaced. The Khaya trunk is used for furniture and the branches for charcoal. The other three trees bear fruit, so we use the branches left after pruning.
Charcoal from Vietnam's agricultural activity is proof that you can have an attractive and viable product without financially supporting the destructors of the world's tropical forests.
Close collaboration between Coal Grill Ltd (an American and Israel-based company) and our Vietnamese producer has created THE REAL CHARCOAL brand. Packaged in 5 and 10 kilo strong polypropylene bags, it comes in a choice of Khaya, Coffee and Lychee/Longan hardwoods. THE REAL CHARCOAL brand has optimal lighting time, excellent aroma, uniform size, consistent burn rate, the right ash color and no waste. It is also offered at competitive prices.
Coal Grill now wishes to arrange the imports of such charcoal for European and USA buyers. If you're a charcoal distributor in these markets, we'd like to talk to you. Many retail outlets all over Israel are already enjoying our Vietnamese quality charcoal.
David Bohbot - email@example.com