WOCMAP VI Special Session of Frankincense and Myrrh

Following the 2018 First International Conference on Frankincense and Medicinal Plants held in Muscat, Oman, the WOCMAP VI organizing committee agreed to arrange a special session dedicated to frankincense and myrrh to promote more research and development work on these two important aromatic resins. The session will present the latest findings concerning the botany, biochemistry, production and marketing of frankincense and myrrh. At the end of the session,  a round table discussion will be held to critically discuss what steps are needed to improve the long-term environmental and socio-economic sustainability of these products.



Introduction and purpose



1 10.00-10.15 Introduction to the WOCMAP frankincense and myrrh special session.

Present status and critical issues for the future of the species

L. Denzil Phillips

Sue Canney


To outline the purpose and objectives of the special session and key global issues
Advances in botany and biochemistry of frankincense and myrrh
2 10.15-10.40 Harnessing Frankincense’ active components: Gold rush in medicinal chemistry and attempts at Unravelling their biosynthesis Ahmed Al Harrasi Review of the latest findings in the biochemistry of frankincense
        10.40 -11.00       COFFEE BREAK
3 11.00-11.30  

Hybridization and new aromatic profiles of frankincense

Nicolas Baldovini Describe project to develop cultivated Boswellia hybrids and the potential impact on the fragrance industry
4 11.30-11.50 Chloroplast genomics of Frankincense (Boswellia sacra) and Myrrh (Commiphora gileadensis and C. foliacea) Abdullatif Khan Discussion of the latest research work into frankincense and myrrh genomes
5 11.50-12.10 The discovery of a new species of frankincense in Somaliland Stephen Johnson Botany and chemistry of  B. occulta  a newly discovered species of frankincense
6 12.10-12.30 Introduction and renew the production of the Ancient Apharsemon (Commiphora gileadensis) in the Dead Sea basin Nativ Dudai

Guy Erlich

Describes the botany, chemistry and cultivation of Commiphora gileadensis
        12.30 to 14.00      LUNCH  BREAK

Sustainability, conservation and trade in frankincense and myrrh

7 14.00-14.25 Keeping frankincense resources: what we need to know and do Frans Bongers Assessment of status of frankincense in North East Africa and what steps are needed to improve sustainability of supply
8 14.25-14.45 A sustainable and ethical way of distilling the essential oil of Boswellia Sacra Ashad Chaudri
9 14.45- 15.10 Frankincense Essential Oils and Sustainability; Lessons Learned from Somaliland/Somalia, Ethiopia and Burkina Faso. Anjanette de Carlo Discusses on the ground experience with sourcing frankincense across Africa
10 15.10-15.30 DoTerra’s co-impact sourcing initiative with special reference to frankincense and myrrh Tim Valentiner A discussion of DoTerra’s co-impact sourcing initiative in Somaliland, Ethiopia and Oman
11 15.30-15.50 Sustainable Production of myrrh in pharmaceutical quality – A medium-sized German pharmaceutical company connects with Ethiopian myrrh collectors Malik Kleinwaechter Review of GIZ backed sustainable myrrh  sourcing project in Ethiopia
12 15.50- 16.05 Critical aspects of frankincense conservation in Dhofar, Oman Salahuddin Ajeeb Describes conservation efforts undertaken in Oman in the last 18 years
        16.05 -16.15              COFFEE BREAK
13 16.15-16.30 Grading and quality control for high quality incense Shehbaz Khan A demonstration of how to sort, grade and classify frankincense resin
14 16.30-16.45 Exploring the impact of ‘Frankincense’ and ‘Myrrh’ as genus trade names Sue Canney


What is in the bottle? Exploring the different local, scientific and trade names.
The future of frankincense and myrrh  – round table discussion
15 16.45-17.30 Interactive roundtable discussion, the future of Frankincense and Myrrh including:-

Frans Bongers, Mark Blumenthal/Stefan Gafner. Anjanette de Carlo, Abeje Eshete, Stephen Johnson, Denzil Phillips, Tim Valentiner

Facilitator: Sue Canney Davison

To map out what where we are and what we most need to do next to increase our knowledge and protect the trees. How might we do it and who can do what?

There will be an informative side display table on different commercial species