The Historical Development And Health Impact Of Swedish Snus
Swedish snus (Swedish: Snus, Swedish pronunciation: [snʉːs]) is a smokeless tobacco product containing nicotine. It is made by grinding tobacco into a powder and mixing it with salt and water, and sometimes with flavorings such as bergamot oil, rose oil, or licorice.
Swedish snus is different from chewing tobacco or fermented dip tobacco and should not be confused with each other. Swedish pipe tobacco is autoclaved (not fermented) and the nicotine is absorbed into the body through the mouth, where it enters the bloodstream and gives a feeling of euphoria. Many people consider a moist mouthpiece to be a healthier alternative to smoking. More people in Sweden today smoke snus (19 %) than cigarettes (10 %).
The History of Swedish Snus
The earliest smokeless tobacco was snuff, which was introduced to Sweden by the French nobility (the Swedish royal family was of French origin), and it was only in 1637 that the word snus first appeared in official Swedish documents.
Towards the end of the 18th century, tobacco was being grown on a large scale in Sweden and the production of snus became a specialized craft. At the end of the 19th century, the production of snuffs was transformed from craft to industrial production.
Jacob Fredric Ljunglöf, a tobacco manufacturer, wanted to find a way to speed up the process, and he, like other manufacturers, was unhappy with the length of time it took for snus to bake out the moisture before it began to mature and develop flavor. He asked a chemist friend, Jacob Berzelius, for help and Berzelius suggested that Yonlew use charcoal made from birch ash to heat the tobacco quickly so that the former production process could be completed in just a few days and the fermentation method of making Swedish cigarettes became history. Yonlöf's oral tobacco quickly became the market leader and is now known as Ettan.
Snus was initially sold in bulk packs, but in 1976 they were sold in smaller packs, which became so popular that manufacturers switched to smaller packs, and the introduction of smaller packs led to an increase in the number of women smoking snus (23% of oral cigarette smokers in Sweden today are women).
Health effects of Swedish Snus
There have been scientific experiments linking some cancers and cardiovascular diseases to smoking, and there are arguments for and against the idea that snus smoking can have adverse health effects. Some experts have assessed the risks associated with snus smoking to be much lower than those associated with smoking, and have argued that the comparisons made between snus and cigarettes are simply misleading; others have argued that snus is more harmful to the smoker than cigarettes.
Advocates of nicotine harm reduction policies then argue that snus is a slightly better alternative to smoking and chewing tobacco.
Nicotine mainly stimulates the sympathetic nervous system, causing an increase in pulse rate and blood pressure. Snus was almost obsolete throughout most of the 20th century, and by the end of the 1960s, the increasing number of warnings about the harm caused by smoking led to an increase in the use of snus in Sweden at that time. The majority of the population supports the smoking ban.
There are now more snus smokers in Sweden (19 %) than smokers (10 %). Sweden is also the only country in Europe to have met the World Health Organisation's target of having no more than 20% of the country's daily smokers. Many believe that the reason for this comes from the high rate of snus use that exists. The American CBS television program 60 Minutes also reported on the snus phenomenon in Sweden.
The process of Using Swedish Snus
The tobacco used in Swedish snus is sourced from all over the world and is always naturally dried (in the past, tobacco was smoke-dried, but this is no longer used due to the adverse health effects). It is made by mixing tobacco, sodium carbonate, and water, then adding flavorings such as bergamot oil, rose oil, licorice, and spices. The main difference from other smokeless tobacco products is that Swedish snus is not fermented. Fermented snus contains higher levels of the harmful ingredient nitrosamines than autoclaved Swedish snus.
Swedish snus is regulated by food regulations and must be made by the quality standards of food regulations. Swedish Match, the market leader in snus, has developed a more demanding quality standard, called GothiaTek, in addition to the current regulations.
Packaging of Swedish Snus
Snus in bulk
snus was first packaged in bulk and sold in small boxes bulk (about 40 grams), to be sucked into a small ball with your fingers and then tucked into the back of your upper lip.
Small packets of snus
Since 1973, snus has also been available in small packs, which come in small teabag-like pouches. Each sachet contains about 1 gram of snus grass, and the sachets come in the same outer box as the bulk ones, with about 20-25 sachets per box.
A new type of sachet has since emerged, called a white sachet, which is less moist, has less tobacco flavor in the mouth, and has a slower and longer-lasting nicotine absorption.
Famous people who use Swedish snus
Mickey Dee (drummer of Motörhead)
Ingvar Kamprad - founder of IKEA, Sweden's leading furniture company
Stonebridge - Grammy Award-winning Swedish DJ
Mathias Dahlgren - 2-star Michelin chef
Avicii - Swedish DJ (who keeps a can of GR next to his mixing room)
Stellan Skarsgård - Actor (The Hunt for Red October, Mindhunter, Pirates of the Caribbean, The Hunt for Red October, The Sun is Like Me, Pirates of the Caribbean)
Benny Andersson - ABBA groupie (backstage at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame ceremony in the film, he takes snus at 3:40 of the film time)
Jimmy Wardy - English professional footballer and legendary Premier League goalscorer
Pewdiepie - Famous Swedish Youtuber and content creator