According to F. j. Tapia1), the oil of Nectandra Caparrapi, family Lauracead, has long been known in Columbia as caparrapi oil. The tree which yields this oil is popularly known as canelo, probably because of the cinnamon-like odor of the bark. The production of the oil corresponds in a measure to that of turpentine. At the foot of the trunk, a broad and deep incision is made from which the oil, which is used as a substitute for copaiba balsam, exudes.
According to whether or not heat is applied to remove the water, the oil enters the market more or less colored. The oil contains a monobasic acid C15H2603 which melts at 84,5°. Only from the light colored oils can this acid be obtained in crystalline form. The oil freed from acid consists principally of a sesquiterpene alcohol C15H260, the caparrapiol, which when dehydrated yields C16H24, caparrapene. Alcohol as well as hydrocarbon are readily polymerized, especially under the influence of heat so that about 3/4 of the oil remains behind in a resinified condition when distilled with steam.