The film tries to reconstruct the process of charcoal burning, a traditional craft that has almost disappeared by now in Hungary. Charcoal burning had a centuries-long tradition. The activity flourished mainly in forested regions that were close to metallurgical centres. Good quality charcoal was vitally important for producing metal with a low sulphur content.
Charcoal consumption has dramatically increased in the 19th century due to the prevalence of linen weaving industry. Manglers were substituted with irons using charcoal as fuel.
While the increased demand in the charcoal production resulted in considerable deforestation in the past, traditional charcoal burning either seized to exist or fell back to a great extent by now.
The film follows the process of charcoal burning from the construction of a charcoal kiln till the opening-up of the pile of wood after a few days with the assistance of Géza Szarka.