Buy Tobacco Leaf Online | Whole Leaf Tobacco

Long-term storage of flue-cured/kilned tobacco

desert_pioneer

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 31, 2020
Messages
104
Points
43
Location
Arizona
After searching for a while, and not finding a way to store tobacco leaf for a long time that seemed appealing, I now appeal to the aggregate knowledge of FTT.

One reason I could not find a storage method I liked was due to the climate of where I live.

Does anyone have a good way to store whole tobacco leaf in indoor temperature of high 70s to 80s at very low humidity (basically below 15% guaranteed)?

The dream would be to pile them in separate cardboard boxes, in terms of storage ease, and achieve slow (even extremely gradual) aging as a result of long-term storage, but that seems basically impossible (too low humidity, bad taste leeching from cardboard, etc.)

Seems like I will have to follow some bag in a bag in a storage bin approach.
 

MarcL

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 11, 2013
Messages
4,372
Points
113
Location
Central Maryland
Yeah, can be really sensitive to absorption. I like the pales, anything food grade doesn't put off weirdness. I'd think you'd want to go with the basement at least.
 

Knucklehead

Moderator
Founding Member
Joined
Oct 18, 2012
Messages
10,855
Points
113
Location
NE Alabama
Is this home grown or store bought?
If it is home grown, is it kilned?

My leaf is both purchased from WLT and kilned home grown, both of which are fairly well aged but we all know it can get even better with more age. At what point it gets so good we can’t stand it nobody knows. I store mine in poly nylon bags like you get from WLT and every now and then I give it a little spritzing to make myself feel better but I don’t get too excited about it. Sometimes it gets brittle bone dry for months and it doesn’t hurt a thing. A little spritz and I’m feeling better again. As long the container doesn’t cause mold or impart a taste it’s all good.
 

desert_pioneer

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 31, 2020
Messages
104
Points
43
Location
Arizona
Yeah, can be really sensitive to absorption. I like the pales, anything food grade doesn't put off weirdness. I'd think you'd want to go with the basement at least.

Conditions are strictly 80s and bone-dry lack of humidity, unfortunately. Where I live, basements are a little more than just uncommon.
 

desert_pioneer

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 31, 2020
Messages
104
Points
43
Location
Arizona
Is this home grown or store bought?
If it is home grown, is it kilned?

My leaf is both purchased from WLT and kilned home grown, both of which are fairly well aged but we all know it can get even better with more age. At what point it gets so good we can’t stand it nobody knows. I store mine in poly nylon bags like you get from WLT and every now and then I give it a little spritzing to make myself feel better but I don’t get too excited about it. Sometimes it gets brittle bone dry for months and it doesn’t hurt a thing. A little spritz and I’m feeling better again. As long the container doesn’t cause mold or impart a taste it’s all good.

Yes, I was referring to either flue-cured or air-cured-and-kilned whole leaf (in title).

About your bags, do you keep them in a closet or storage bin (no light) and do you believe that a surrounding temperature of 80s and low humidity would make it ineffective? (I assume I'd be spritzing more often)
 

Knucklehead

Moderator
Founding Member
Joined
Oct 18, 2012
Messages
10,855
Points
113
Location
NE Alabama
Yes, I was referring to either flue-cured or air-cured-and-kilned whole leaf (in title).

About your bags, do you keep them in a closet or storage bin (no light) and do you believe that a surrounding temperature of 80s and low humidity would make it ineffective? (I assume I'd be spritzing more often)

I keep mine in the vapor proof bags folded about three times at the open end and secure them with wooden clothes pins. Then place them in cardboard boxes in the basement at around 65-70 degrees. (I like the idea of the cardboard breathing, but there may be zero basis in my prejudice) Some of my leaf is just stacked on shelves in the bag with no boxes or containers. The thermostat is upstairs so the basement usually runs a few few degrees cooler than the upstairs. I haphazardly spritz every few months but I like the current taste of the leaf so there’s really no motivation for me to introduce changes or worry about aging. Your mileage may vary.

80 degrees isn’t going to hurt anything and neither will low or no humidity. If you are perfectly satisfied with the flavor, storing absolutely brittle dry isn’t going to make the taste better or worse, but the aging process will cease until moisture is introduced. If you feel it needs further aging, spritz it and the aging process continues. Brittle dry you could say the leaves are hibernating or dormant.
 

desert_pioneer

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 31, 2020
Messages
104
Points
43
Location
Arizona
I keep mine in the vapor proof bags folded about three times at the open end and secure them with wooden clothes pins. Then place them in cardboard boxes in the basement at around 65-70 degrees. (I like the idea of the cardboard breathing, but there may be zero basis in my prejudice) Some of my leaf is just stacked on shelves in the bag with no boxes or containers. The thermostat is upstairs so the basement usually runs a few few degrees cooler than the upstairs. I haphazardly spritz every few months but I like the current taste of the leaf so there’s really no motivation for me to introduce changes or worry about aging. Your mileage may vary.

80 degrees isn’t going to hurt anything and neither will low or no humidity. If you are perfectly satisfied with the flavor, storing absolutely brittle dry isn’t going to make the taste better or worse, but the aging process will cease until moisture is introduced. If you feel it needs further aging, spritz it and the aging process continues. Brittle dry you could say the leaves are hibernating or dormant.

I did a little further searching around taking inspiration from your vapor proof bag method, and I found a website that sold various containers and "humidity maintaining packs" and other related things.

What caught my eye was their "humidor bag" product. The website is called bovedainc (basically search up "boveda humidor bag")

It can (supposedly) maintain a set humidity for a year, and since it is clear/see-through, I assume I can check for mold every once in a while as long as I am not packing the bag to the point of it bursting. Do you think it is a viable method of storing whole leaves?

Also, is it possible to store stemmed leaves (that have been flue-cured or kilned) above a certain humidity level and basically achieve the slow aging process through long-term storage? I think that would save space for me - these are not for cigars, so I can rip them up, I assume.
 

Knucklehead

Moderator
Founding Member
Joined
Oct 18, 2012
Messages
10,855
Points
113
Location
NE Alabama
I did a little further searching around taking inspiration from your vapor proof bag method, and I found a website that sold various containers and "humidity maintaining packs" and other related things.

What caught my eye was their "humidor bag" product. The website is called bovedainc (basically search up "boveda humidor bag")

It can (supposedly) maintain a set humidity for a year, and since it is clear/see-through, I assume I can check for mold every once in a while as long as I am not packing the bag to the point of it bursting. Do you think it is a viable method of storing whole leaves?

Also, is it possible to store stemmed leaves (that have been flue-cured or kilned) above a certain humidity level and basically achieve the slow aging process through long-term storage? I think that would save space for me - these are not for cigars, so I can rip them up, I assume.

D’addario sells humidifiers for guitars that work really well. It is made by Boveda or uses their technology. It Will maintain humidity between 45-55 rh (don’t quote me on my numbers) by either releasing or absorbing the humidity to maintain those numbers. They get hard after awhile and need to be replaced but you can tell by feel and they last about 6 months inside a guitar case in my humidity which can swing from dry to humid.

You could try the boveda paks and see how they work for you. Try one and see if that’s the way to go. I think you can get them that maintain target humidity levels. Again, this is just from memory. I have a good memory but it only lasts for about 30 seconds.

Yes. It doesn’t need much moisture for the aging process to work, just stay away from high humidity to avoid mold.

Also look at Uline plastic products. Sometimes you can find products that aren’t advertised for a target product and that alone can reduce cost. Works the same as a “tobacco box” but sold as a “box” for much less than those advertising tobacco accessories.
 

ChinaVoodoo

Moderator
Joined
Sep 1, 2014
Messages
6,402
Points
113
Location
Edmonton, AB, CA
I've used boveda in my humidor and in non vapour proof bags and they don't last very long. A boveda in a totally sealed jar lasts forever. So you're kind of back to square one in my opinion. You still need to have decent storage to start with.
 

desert_pioneer

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 31, 2020
Messages
104
Points
43
Location
Arizona
I've used boveda in my humidor and in non vapour proof bags and they don't last very long. A boveda in a totally sealed jar lasts forever. So you're kind of back to square one in my opinion. You still need to have decent storage to start with.

What is the issue of a boveda lasting forever in a sealed jar ? (I didn't understand)

Also, I am talking about a specific "humidor bag" that they sell, if it makes a difference.

The bag "zips to seal" according to its description, and obviously a boveda pack is kept inside it, but the bag part was the key (I think).

Essentially, the humidor bag is meant to store cigars, but wouldn't it basically do well to store kilned tobacco leaf?
 

Charly

Moderator
Joined
May 1, 2016
Messages
2,198
Points
113
Location
France
What is the issue of a boveda lasting forever in a sealed jar ? (I didn't understand)

ChinaVoodoo means : if you want your boveda pack to last you have to find a good sealing box first.

The bag "zips to seal" according to its description, and obviously a boveda pack is kept inside it, but the bag part was the key (I think).

That's it, the container has to be really sealed.

Essentially, the humidor bag is meant to store cigars, but wouldn't it basically do well to store kilned tobacco leaf?

What works to store cigar should work as well to store tobacco leaf. But tobacco leaf take way more volume than cigars.
 

desert_pioneer

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 31, 2020
Messages
104
Points
43
Location
Arizona
What works to store cigar should work as well to store tobacco leaf. But tobacco leaf take way more volume than cigars.

Since I would be storing kilned leaf not meant for cigars, couldn't I remove the stem and put the rest of the leaves (likely ripped into pieces) in the bag and still achieve slow aging ?
 

deluxestogie

Administrator
Staff member
Joined
May 25, 2011
Messages
19,893
Points
113
Location
near Blacksburg, VA
Since I would be storing kilned leaf not meant for cigars, couldn't I remove the stem and put the rest of the leaves (likely ripped into pieces) in the bag and still achieve slow aging ?
I think the disconnect in this conversation is that the recommendations are for a meaningful quantity of home-grown tobacco, whereas @desert_pioneer is envisioning only a tiny quantity.

A sealed container is the only thing required. Minimal care is needed to maintain whole leaf in whatever case you prefer.

Bob
 

desert_pioneer

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 31, 2020
Messages
104
Points
43
Location
Arizona
... to maintain whole leaf in whatever case you prefer.

Is it possible to store them stemmed (and presumably in multiple pieces due to the stemming)?

I am not sure whether whole leaf means whole and intact leaves, or if stemmed leaves that are not shredded basically count as whole leaf in practice.
 
Top