Esoterica Penzance and Dunbar Mold/Crystal ID

mingc

Active member
#41
There is no such thing as plume/bloom. There are sugars, salts, fungi, and molds.
Thanks for the response.

You probably know the Friends of Habanos mold study. I have aged stuff that looks under a x10 loupe like what are on Lots 5, 6 & 8, which according to Australia Biotech Laboratories are "bacterial plant growth." I've never seen sugar or salt for that matter (but I probably couldn't tell even if I had). Have you seen sugar on non-vac aged sealed pipe tobacco? I gather you've seen salts.
 

Super K

Well-known member
#43
Thanks for the response.

You probably know the Friends of Habanos mold study. I have aged stuff that looks under a x10 loupe like what are on Lots 5, 6 & 8, which according to Australia Biotech Laboratories are "bacterial plant growth." I've never seen sugar or salt for that matter (but I probably couldn't tell even if I had). Have you seen sugar on non-vac aged sealed pipe tobacco? I gather you've seen salts.
So this tobacco gathered dust at some point?
 

mingc

Active member
#46
According to the study you posted a link to.
View attachment 51162
I thought the "dust" was what was being analyzed. In any event, microbes, i.e., bacteria, fungi, spores, are everywhere and there are lots of it, even if there's no visible dust around. I'm also more interested in the pipe tobacco they examined. Some of the lots look exactly like what I have or have seen.
 

Super K

Well-known member
#50
I thought the "dust" was what was being analyzed. In any event, microbes, i.e., bacteria, fungi, spores, are everywhere and there are lots of it, even if there's no visible dust around. I'm also more interested in the pipe tobacco they examined. Some of the lots look exactly like what I have or have seen.
Myself included, I’ve smoked plenty of Virginia based tobacco that was covered in what I thought was sugar crystals. That myth has been busted. ( I think )??
 

Mpugh777

Well-known member
#51
So here’s my question...Here’s a pile of Germain’s Special Latakia Flake...look at the grayish tobacco...is that a natural color or is this trash? This is from a just opened bag. I mean we have all probably opened tins of something like FVF with flat, crystalline formations and have probably smoked it. Could it just be the sugar casing applied heavily on some British tobaccos that are moist in the tin? 0BE16DCA-A37C-440A-BF45-516B9130498B.jpeg
 

Super K

Well-known member
#52
So here’s my question...Here’s a pile of Germain’s Special Latakia Flake...look at the grayish tobacco...is that a natural color or is this trash? This is from a just opened bag. I mean we have all probably opened tins of something like FVF with flat, crystalline formations and have probably smoked it. Could it just be the sugar casing applied heavily on some British tobaccos that are moist in the tin? View attachment 51222
I’m no help in this matter but I hope it’s smokable and not trash. I’m wondering if the trip across the pond and extreme temp swings mixed with high moisture content isn’t causing condensation/ mold.
 
#53
Lots of Virginia’ tobacco, maybe damn near all, is cased to some degree with sugar, honey, molasses, treacle, whatever, and the casing forms sugar crystals. This will happen vacuum sealed or not, slower if not. Simplest “rule” I know of, if it sparkles it is sugar, if it smells bad or is fuzzy or hairy, it is mold.

But there is, particularly with reasonably fresh product, room in the middle for doubt. Don’t smoke it if in doubt. And cold only causes dormancy for mold spores. It does not kill them. Heat might, but aside from the fact that you might not like how heat changes the taste of your tobacco, apparently different strains of mold have varying heat resistant properties, so who knows how long and at what temperature to raise it to?

I have separately jarred many tins of suspect tobacco in sanitized containers, segregated them from my stash, and watched what happened, and most of the time in a matter of months the mold is unmistakable. But not always. Still sucks, though.
 

Super K

Well-known member
#54
Lots of Virginia’ tobacco, maybe damn near all, is cased to some degree with sugar, honey, molasses, treacle, whatever, and the casing forms sugar crystals. This will happen vacuum sealed or not, slower if not. Simplest “rule” I know of, if it sparkles it is sugar, if it smells bad or is fuzzy or hairy, it is mold.

But there is, particularly with reasonably fresh product, room in the middle for doubt. Don’t smoke it if in doubt. And cold only causes dormancy for mold spores. It does not kill them. Heat might, but aside from the fact that you might not like how heat changes the taste of your tobacco, apparently different strains of mold have varying heat resistant properties, so who knows how long and at what temperature to raise it to?

I have separately jarred many tins of suspect tobacco in sanitized containers, segregated them from my stash, and watched what happened, and most of the time in a matter of months the mold is unmistakable. But not always. Still sucks, though.
The two jars of Penzance are in quarantine until it either grows hair like a Hippy or crystallizes. I was in no hurry to smoke this stuff either way as I don’t care for it fresh.
 

Tedvig

Well-known member
#55
So here’s my question...Here’s a pile of Germain’s Special Latakia Flake...look at the grayish tobacco...is that a natural color or is this trash? This is from a just opened bag. I mean we have all probably opened tins of something like FVF with flat, crystalline formations and have probably smoked it. Could it just be the sugar casing applied heavily on some British tobaccos that are moist in the tin? View attachment 51222
Almost all the esoteric and germain's blends I have, have that greyish cast on the bits of black tobacco. I don't think It's harmful, perhaps just a topping that dries and looks like that on the dark pieces.