Methyl dihydrojasmonate (MDJ) is a liquid with a typical fruity, jasmine-like blossom odour. The molecule was discovered in the 60s by the company Firmenich and then commercialized as Hedione in 1957 the researcher Eduard Demole revealed the presence of methyl jasmonate in the absolute of Jasmine. He then synthesized the dihydro derivative, methyl dihydrojasmonate, which was patented in 1962 by Firmenich and called Hedione.
Natural MDJ is present in some types of Tea and in trace amount in Jasmine Absolute, Osmanthus and Bergamot.
MDJ has a fresh, warming, smooth jasmine floral note with hints of citrus. It is reminiscent of the freshest and purest part of jasmine. It is a mixture of lily of the valley and jasmine with a citronée note on the head. It smells sweet and aggressive at the same time and it is said to have the power to trigger female desire, by activating pheromone receptor related to emotion and sexual response.
MDJ has become an important support element in modern formulas. It gives brightness and floral volume to fragrances, as well as being very persistent. Some fragrances contain very high percentage of hedione, up to 30%.
MDJ as flavour is added as sweet aromatic lift to tea. It has the power to enhance the sharpness of the tea flavor and gives a clean refreshing finish.
MDJ can be obtained by condensation of 2-pentyl-2-cyclopenten-1-one with methylmalonate, followed by hydrolysis, decarboxylation and methylation. This results in a 9:1 mixture of trans- and cis isomers.
High cis Hedione (Hedione HC) has an higher cis concentration than classical Hedione and has a superior booster effect.
The yearly global market size is estimated to be 20’000 Metric Tons.