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Whole Leaf Tobacco

Kizami tobacco

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#1
A friend was asking me about Kizami tobacco. It is the tobacco they use in the little Kiseru pipes in Japan. The two brands are called Koiki, and Takarabune. It is not legal to export tobacco from Japan. I was looking into growing it, wondering what variety of tobacco it might be. There are Japanese seeds available through our various suppliers and germplasm banks. I noticed a few in the Canadian GRIN today.

Anyhow, here is a video on making Kizami. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qV_VBnRMBwU

From the video, I would deduce that it is neither oriental, nor flue-cured. That is about it. Has anyone tasted it, or have some further information on the subject?
 
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#2
As tobaccos are often named after the region they originate from, I theorize that if we knew the location of the factory in the video, we might know the varietal they are using.
 

jojjas

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#3
A guy here in sweden occasionly smoking that kind of tobacco , his opinion are that it reminds of high quality burley , but i have not tested myself so i should not have an opnion , but it would be interessting to try
 
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#4
A guy here in sweden occasionly smoking that kind of tobacco , his opinion are that it reminds of high quality burley , but i have not tested myself so i should not have an opnion , but it would be interessting to try
I think your friend is right. It's likely one farm which surrounds one factory, and they grow the same old air cured tobacco which they have grown for years. Might be open pollinated too.
 
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#6

Jitterbugdude

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#7
It might be both! Look at a lot of old pictures of tobacco used to make Perique. Sometimes it looks to be a Flue Cured variety and other times it appears to be a Burley. They did not take great strides back then to isolate their tobacco strains.
 

FmGrowit

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#8
It looks like it's made from Air Cured tobaccos. In the video, you can see the workers creating blends. I believe the actual recipe is visible, but it's writen in Japanese.

 
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#9
A friend of mine did some translation of the video for me. The following is her response.

I had to get some help from a friend, too technical!

Natsuki tells me that, according to the video, they use a blend of 5 kinds of tobacco to make kizami. Downside: they don’t actually state in the video what the 5 kinds of tobacco are. Two of them mentioned are 国分葉and 水府葉 (Kokubu tobacco, from Kagoshima and Suifu tobacco from Ibaraki), but it seems unlikely that they’d mention these and then not use them in the production of kizami. The intro said suifu-ha is as popular as kokubu-ha.

The factory in the video is in Tokushima Prefecture on Shikoku (the factory is 日本専売公社 池田工場). It’s now owned by Japan Tobacco and there’s a museum there now. http://www.jti.co.jp/tob.../journal/travel/tokushima/02.html . The region is also famous for 阿波葉 (awa-ha), so they probably use that in kizami too. But there’s not actually much info on how they blend it.

I get the feeling that this is like a video about making a blended scotch – they’re probably not going to tell you exactly which malts and grains they blend.
She also posted a link to this website: http://www.jti.co.jp/tobacco-world/journal/travel/tokushima/02.html
 
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#10
It didn't take long to find these tobaccos. Northwood Seeds has Awa-ha, and Suifu-ha. Frankly, the leaves of the Awa look identical to the leaves in the video. Wide leaf with a pointy tip.

Awa_1.jpg

A quick search of GRIN-CA reveals that they have Kokubu-ha as well as Awa and Suifu, and three others, presumably donated at the same time.

  1. CN 35470 Darumaha
  2. CN 35471 Awaha
  3. CN 35472 Kokubuha
  4. CN 35473 Suifuha
  5. CN 35474 Ibusukiha
  6. CN 35475 Nambuha

I still think they are air curing the Awa though.
 

istanbulin

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#11
I finally had a package of "Koiki" brand Kizami tobacco from Japan. This brand tobacco is manufactured by Japan Tobacco. As you may know American cigarette brands like Winston, Camel and Salem are manufactured and marketed by Japan Tobacco International (JTI) outside of the USA.

The picture of the package is below, a quite plain small paper box. Inside the box, the tobacco is tightly packed in a paper envelope. After breaking the small paper seal of the envelope everyone who smelled the tobacco can say it has a little fire cured tobacco in the blend. Color of this very fine shredded tobacco is not dark and reddish as it is in the photo, it's just light brown.

I don't have a Kiseru pipe so I'm thinking about trying it as a cigarette and may be in a regular smoking pipe.

1.jpg 2.jpg
 
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