What is Binchotan Charcoal?

What is Binchotan Charcoal?

The Binchotan(備長炭), also called white charcoal, is a type of charcoal traditionally used in Japanese cooking. The Binchotan(備長炭) is named after a charcoal maker in Tanabe, Wakayama prefecture, Binchoya Chozaemon (備中屋長左衛門) who started to selling this type of charcoal in late 17th Century. Originally Binchotan was only from Wakayama prefecture, but some charcoal makers have moved to other areas. Nowadays, Binchotan charcoal is also produced in Vietnam, Laos, China, Indonesia....

Perfecting a technique that produced charcoal of extraordinary purity, the charcoal makers carefully and sustainably choosing branch clippings, stacking them inside large kilns and then burning them at low temperatures over several weeks to control the Oxygen flow. Lastly, they increased the temperature inside the kiln to above 1000 degrees and monitored the colour of the smoke. Once it was clear, all impurities had been burnt away and Binchotan Charcoal is nearly 100% carbon.

In the 20th Century, scientists began to study the benefits of Binchotan and its properties, finding that it had a micro-porous structure with 270 square metres of internal surface in each gram. Through a process of 'adsorption', whereby particles are attracted and adhere to the surface, the pores cleanse the environment by adsorbing gases from the atmosphere, electromagnetic waves and radio frequencies as well as chlorine and heavy metals from water. Radiation is also weakened as it passes through Binchotan. Binchotan creates 'good energy' by giving off negative ions. Negative ions are atoms that carry a negative electric charge which attracts positive ions in the air, such as carbon dioxide molecules. An excessive amount of positive ions in the environment can affect respiratory function and cause fatigue. Binchotan adsorbs these positive ions and instead releases the negative ions found in natural energy such as waves, waterfalls and thunderstorms.

Besides using as cooking fuel, what is Binchotan benefit for your health and home?

Filter and alkalise water

Whole Binchotan sticks can be placed into water to purify it and remove chemicals and heavy metals found in tap water. With a ratio of 50 grams per litre, Binchotan can be placed in a water jug or bottle and left in the fridge overnight to purify and alkalise the water. This natural alkaliser can be used for around two months before needing to be replaced, and can be boiled in water every two to three weeks to remove the absorbed chemicals and refresh the sticks. 

Deodorise and regulate humidity

 The Binchotan sticks can be placed throughout the kitchen and home to get rid of unwanted odours, musty smells and excess humidity. Place a few Binchotan sticks in your fridge, pantry, living room or bedroom to purify the air and even absorb electromagnetic waves. The Charcoal draws toxins from the air by attracting and absorbing positive ions, and in doing so can help to cleanse the air from harmful particles and provide relief from breathing difficulties, asthma and allergies.