In our previous blog post, we took you through the process of indoor tobacco planting at Gaia Snus. Today, we want to bring you on the journey of taking those small tobacco plants that have started to grow, and planting them outside in Swedish field to take care of them until they're ready to be harvested.
''I'm all grown up, mom!''
It's fun planting tobacco seeds indoors and seeing the plants grow out of their seeds. But same as humans, tobacco plants need to go out and explore the world, in order to truly experience life and grow stronger.
When tobacco plants are about 10cm high, that's when we know that they've grown up enough to leave home and explore Swedish outdoor life. We normally take the plants outside early to middle of May, depending on the weather. It's important that the temperature is above zero for the plants to survive and thrive. Yes, we believe in them. But we're also realistic. It can't be that cold if we want our plants to live long enough to produce snus!
Where & how Much
This year our Gaia tobacco plants have been planted in Rörbraket and Brogården Kalmar. We managed to plant around 20.000 tobacco plants of two different families: Rustica and Burley. We're hoping to learn more about the difference between them, regarding their growth in the field and also their snus taste. With Rustica we aim to get a stronger tobacco feel, and with Burley we're experimenting to get a more interesting snus flavour.
Swedish weather - love it or hate it?
We don't always love Swedish weather, but when it comes to growing tobacco and making snus, Swedish weather is not too bad! However, weather is unpredictable no matter where you are. And as all other tobacco farmers in the world, we struggle growing the highest amount of tobacco possible due to unstable weather conditions.
It ain't easy but it's worth it!
Besides the weather, another of our biggest challenges are weeds in the field. Since we grow our tobacco plants ecologically, we naturally get loads of weeds. To cope with them, we use a combination of a tractor and tons of manual work!
It is our top priority in Gaia to grow our plants in an eco-friendly and sustainable way. That's why we don't use in the field anything that's toxic neither for the earth, the plants nor our consumers, and we individually take care of every plant. This definitely creates a lot of work for us. But we believe that it's worth it, since our work pays off when...
1. We get premium quality snus.
2. We realise that we're being environmentally responsible in the process.
Timing is everything
In order to make sure the plants grow healthy, timing is one of the most important factors. We need to regularly keep track of every plant in order to make sure we take the right action at the right time. This is done by us at team Gaia, and thankfully also with the help of our fantastic farmers, who not only are extremely knowledgable but also crazy funny!
One of the things we do on a regular basis is removing the tobacco flower. Our goal is to produce snus, and we make snus from the leaves, not from the flowers! So when we remove the flower, we make sure that the plant's energy is effectively used solely for the leaves' growth.
Another action we regularly take is removing the so called ''thieves''. These are small leaves that grow upon the larger leaves, stealing energy from them. So by regularly removing thieves in our tobacco plants, we make sure that the larger leaves get all the energy the need to grow strong, and later on produce top notch snus.
Come take a look!
It's important for us at Gaia Snus, that our customers know as much as they want to, about the snus they consume and process behind its production. That's why we openly talk about our processes, highlighting that Gaia Snus is specifically made for those who value high quality snus that comes from an eco-friendly and sustainable process.
Also, our farms are open to anyone who wants to visit them and learn about the Gaia Snus process. So if you'd like to pay us a visit, reach out to us through the contact form here or send us a message on social media.
We keep the tobacco plants in the field for about 90 days. At that point, they're ready to be harvested in order to move on to the next stage of the process: snus making! We normally start harvesting in August and we're normally done with this step in September.
Make sure you stay tuned in our social media, to receive updates and details about the next steps in the process! If you liked this blog post, we'd truly appreciate if you leave us a like or a comment below, and share it with someone that you think would enjoy it!