"Beyond, way beyond the best there is something much rarer that we call kynam," Mahaffey explains. "It’s the rarest wood on earth. It’s rarer than titanium, uranium, platinum, rarer than diamond, and we call it kynam."


Kynam is the best of all the agarwood species, with the most prized aroma of all oud. Mahaffey's biggest find for a customer so far is 16kg of 600-year-old wood. It took him five years to find, and it was sold for a staggering $20m.


"The price of the kynam is really skyrocketing," he says. "It can be $10,000 for one gram. In Shanghai they sold a piece two or three years ago, it was $18m for two kilos of kynam, so it’s like $9m per kilo."

How to burn kynam the Japanese way

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