I hope I can clarify a bit of what seems to be happening with the Holy Land incense, and certainly other Tibetan, Indian, and Nepali incenses.
Most of the incenses that I import are 100% natural or contain a very high amount of all natural ingredients. Certainly Tibetan and Nepali incenses are the most natural incenses made, using literally no artificial ingredients. Now let’s change tracks a bit.
The wines produced from the exact same grove of grapes will taste differently from year to year. The weather has a huge impact on the taste of the fruit. Less rain produces a higher sugar content. More rain, less sweet. There are many other weather factors that also affect the taste of the fruit. Vineyards then call the yearly harvest and resulting wine a ‘vintage’. Even if you don’t consume wine, you certainly can taste the difference from season to season in the fruits you purchase from your local grocery. The taste is affected by the weather in the growing region of the fruit. Here in Minnesota, for instance, the drought from the past 2 summers has produced the most gorgeous fall colors I have ever seen … less rain means higher sugar content in the leaves and more brilliant fall color.
The same happens with the leaves, roots, flowers, et. al. that are used to produce all natural incense. The weather affects ALL growing and living things, including incense ingredients.
To the absolute best of my knowledge, the recipe of the Holy Land has not changed from when I first was able to import it in 2008. What HAS changed are the growing seasons. And I continue to be told by the Monastery that the Holy Land recipe has not changed.
The Holy Land that I currently have in stock was imported in August 2011. I believe it to contain a large amount of high quality ingredients, including animal musk.
This is the best explanation that I can offer. I hope you will try Holy Land for yourself, from my current stock, and enjoy what I consider one of Tibet’s finest incenses.
Essence of the Ages