Have you ever heard of something called Whale vomit? It might sound strange, but believe it or not, this yucky substance called ambergris is worth a lot of money! Let’s dive into the surprising reasons behind its value and learn about the incredible ways people use it.
The Mystery of Ambergris:
Ambergris is a special substance that comes from inside the stomachs of sperm whales. It’s believed to be a way for whales to protect their tummies from the hard beaks and indigestible items of giant squids they eat. As time goes by, the vomit hardens and floats up to the surface of the ocean. It might not look very nice, but it has a unique smell that changes over time.
A Valuable Treasure:
Because it’s so rare and in demand, ambergris can be very expensive. People who are lucky enough to find a big piece of it can sell it for millions of dollars! The price depends on how big and how good the piece is. Ambergris which is in high quality is worth over $27 a gram. A 30kg piece which was found by Thailand Fisherman in 2021 was sold for over US$1 million. Imagine finding something on the beach and it turns out to be worth a fortune!
The Wonderful Smell:
Perfume makers are big fans of Ambergris. Its special smell, which is a mix of musk and the ocean, makes perfumes last longer and gives them a special touch. That’s why they call it “floating gold” or the “treasure of the sea.” People love perfumes that have a hint of ambergris because it makes them smell good. Ancient Egypt also used the scent of Ambergris in incense and scented oil.
Guess what? Ambergris has also been used in medicine and cooking! Western Cultures have used Whale vomit to stabilize the scent in perfumes. But Eastern cultures have used it for its medicinal properties and as a spice in cooking. Chinese medicine has long been known to incorporate Ambergris of Whales to treat respiratory diseases and as a sexual stimulant.
It’s also been added to food to make it taste even better. Chefs love experimenting with ambergris to create fancy dishes. It is known that King Charles II of England‘s favorite dish used to be an egg dish served with Ambergris.
Whale vomit might not be something you’d expect to be valuable, but ambergris is a truly special substance. Its amazing smell adds magic to perfumes, and it has even been used in medicine and cooking. So, the next time you hear about whale vomit being worth a lot of money, remember that even the most unusual things can have incredible value and fascinating stories behind them.