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Gird your intestines for an onslaught of gross words. We'll be talking today about vomit, and more specifically, sperm whale vomit, also known as ambergris. Ambergis, which has apparently been responsible for keeping expensive perfume's endnote going strong all these years, forms around undigestible items in the whale's stomach before it's puked up in "waxy, dullish grey balls, which can weigh up to 100 pounds." While that sounds less than appetizing, you should know that it typically rakes in $20,000 per kilogram.
Since trolling for whale vom on shorelines gets tiring, and the other options are either poaching or using the "hit-or-miss" synthetic replacement Ambrox, science has been on a search to find a better alternative for awhile. And now researchers at the University of British Columbia claim to have found the end to the vomit perfume conundrum through a sustainable, plant-based improvement on the regular recipe. The synthetic ingredient has allegedly been improved enough that both animal rights activists as well as people who don't like icky things sprayed on them can relax now.
· The Sweet Smell of Synthetic Whale Ambergris [EcoImagination]