The clove tree has been cultivated in the Indian Ocean since the 18th century, when the French introduced it to Reunion Island and Mauritius. In Madagascar, it was first planted in the early 19th century in the eastern coastal Tamatave region. Today cloves are one of the main exports of the "Red Island," where 10,000 to 15,000 tons are produced each year on 80,000 hectares divided into thousands of small holdings.
The cloves are harvested from March to May, just before the flowers begin to blossom. After picking they are separated from their stalk, which is called the "claw," and dried. We import cloves from Madagascar to produce our essential oil of clove in France.