Les Comptoirs de l'Azalai

Azalai Salt


The Azalaï salt is, according to the nomads of Sahel, the very best salt in the world.

Savoury alimentary salt, it is also used as medication by the desert-population, beneficial against respiratory problems, such as common colds, but also bronchitis and asthma.

The local shepherds confirm to have noticed that, deprived of the salt spring-water during the summer transhumance; the men, as well as the herds suffered from serious health deficiencies as well as diminishing eyesight...

Azalaï salt is one of the few mining salts containing iodine (3,5mg/kg).

Fruit of the fast evaporation of the oceans in the Jurassic era, its composition is 98,6% sodium chloride.

It is rich in calcium (0,38g/100g), magnesium (0,005g/100g), and copper (0,500mg/kg), iron (0,500mg/kg), and nickel (0,500mg/kg) and in chromium (1,2mg/kg).

Transported to Timbuktu in big bars, the salt is washed, pounded in ebony- mortars and packaged according to strict hygienic rules on the premises of "Comptoir de lÔÇÖAzala├»", before arriving on your table.


The salt in Taoudeni belongs to... whoever wants to exploit it.

Around six hundred courageous hard working miners, take advantage of this (free raw materiall) natural gift to make a living for their families; left behind in the village.
Hard labour complains some of them, who nevertheless stay far from their dear ones six months a year.

Miners must first dig out a hole about ten meters large and four to five meters deep to reach the level of the salt veins.

The first level reveals the grey salt destined for the animals.
Underneath, a clearer salt for domestic use and then finally they reach the pure white Azalaï salt.

They have to dig out horizontal galleries secured by carrying pillars and cut the mineral following the ancient geological layers.

Large slabs measuring approximately one meter by fifty centimetres and ten centimetres thick are then skilfully separated in two with one chisel-blow.

The final step is to cut the bars in to the right dimension for transport, and for the miner to put his signature on it, before stocking the salt await to the next merchant caravan.