Snuff is a smokeless tobacco made from ground or pulverised tobacco leaves. It is insufflated or "snuffed" into the nasal cavity, delivering a swift hit of nicotine and a lasting flavoured scent (especially if flavouring has been blended with the tobacco). Traditionally it is sniffed or inhaled lightly after a pinch of snuff is placed onto the back surface of the hand, held pinched between thumb and index finger, or held by a specially made "snuffing" device.
It originated in theAmericasand was in common use in Europe by the 17th century. Traditional snuff production consists of a lengthy, multi-step process, in tobacco snuff mills. The selected tobacco leaves are first subject to special tobacco curing or fermentation processes, where they will later provide the individual characteristics and flavour for each type of snuff blend.Snuff is usually scented or flavoured, with many blends of snuff requiring months to years of special storage to reach the required maturity.Typical traditional flavours are varieties of carefully blended tobacco leaves considered original "fine snuff" without any addition of scents or essences,varieties of spice, piquant, fruit, floral, and mentholated (also called "medicated") soon followed, either pure or in blends. Each snuff manufacturer usually has a variety of unique recipes and blends, as well as special recipes for individual customers. Common flavours also include coffee, chocolate, bordeaux,honey, vanilla, cherry, orange, apricot, plum, camphor, cinnamon, rose and spearmint. Modern flavours include Bourbon, Cola and whisky. Traditional classic German snuff blends are the piquant Schmalzlerand Brasil.
Snuff comes in a range of texture and moistness, from very fine to coarse, and from toast (very dry) to very moist. Often drier snuffs are ground more finely. There is also a range of tobacco-free snuffs, such as Pöschl's Weiss (White), made from glucose powder or herbs. While strictly speaking these are not snuffs because they contain no tobacco, they are an alternative for those who wish to avoid nicotine, or for "cutting" a strong snuff to an acceptable strength.
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