Skip to content, or skip to search.

Skip to content, or skip to search.

Synthetic Flame: A History

How America’s favorite fake fuel came to be.


In the mid-sixties, the California Cedar Products Company, the world’s largest manufacturer of wooden pencil slats, decided to figure out a use for the tons of sawdust its factories were throwing away. “After several years,” Duraflame brand manager Crystal Wohle explains, “they realized it could be combined with petroleum wax and extruded into an extremely efficient fire log.” Since then, the formula has changed (the classic Duraflame log is now plant wax, sawdust, and ground-up agricultural by-products like nutshells and olive pits), and Duraflame has introduced products like the Crackleflame (which does what its name suggests) and the Colorlog, which produces purple-, blue-, and green-hued accent flames. They are still, however, missing one thing that natural logs offer. “We tried developing a log that smelled like pine or cinnamon,” Wohle says, “but the scent always went straight up the flue.”


Related:

Advertising
Current Issue
Subscribe to New York
Subscribe

Give a Gift

Advertising