Snus was invented in Sweden hundreds of years ago as a method of preserving tobacco. Then, over time, it became a comparatively cheaper form of consumable tobacco in the country. Now, there are mostly two types of snus available in the market: the original Swedish and the relatively new American variation. Swedish authority regulates snus as a food product under the Swedish Food Act and regulates additives and other contents that go into production. However, in America and elsewhere, the production ingredients mostly depend on the manufacturers. Swedish snus has a distinctly heavy tobacco flavor, compared to the American snus which, in most cases, are sweet in flavor.
Snus is different from other forms of tobacco products. Tobacco leaves are mostly air-dried around the world for making different tobacco products. Air drying leads to fermentation and increases the acidity for more efficient nicotine consumption. Snus, in contrast, takes the air-dried tobacco, grounds it, and then pasteurizes it for 2-3 days. Because of this, the snus is less acidic, absorbed comparatively slower than other tobacco products, and does not hurt when swallowed. To balance out the neutralizing impact of pasteurization though, snus manufacturers add salt and sodium bicarbonate, which give it its distinct & strong flavor. Most Swedish snus has approximately 50% of water content.
Snus variations & packaging
Different brands market their snus with different strengths of tobacco. Traditionally, the most common strength has been 8mg of nicotine per 1g of tobacco. In recent times, however, stronger snus has become available containing 11mg, 22mg, or sometimes even 45mg of nicotine per 1g of tobacco. Commercial snus comes in two major variations: Loose and Portion. Loose snus comes in a moist powder form that is consumed mostly by experienced users, whereas Portion snus comes in mini paper-bags for convenience, otherwise containing the same moist tobacco powder. Original portion, the traditional type, is packaged in moist bags, and White portion is packaged in dry bags and thus releases slower.