I read somewhere that mold on tobaccos can sometimes be an issue, depending on how tobaccos are packaged/shipped.
It got me thinking about how the potential for mold, bacteria, or other contaminants on tobacco might transfer to our extracts, particularly to PG extracts. I’m not sure what can live in PGA, and understand that PG is even resistant to bacterial growth, but maybe the stuff that might grow in a pouch of tobacco is something different?
Not worried, really. Just curious. Is there a way to make sure our extracts are “clean”, without otherwise harming the extract’s flavor or safe vapability? Maybe add a small amount of PGA after the extract is finished, then evap it off?
I know, if there is a green, fuzzy, moving mass in my tobacco, I probably shouldn’t use it :]
But what about stuff we cannot see?
In the 1940s and early 1950s, further studies showed inactivation of diverse bacteria, influenza virus, and Penicillium chrysogenum (previously P. notatum) mold fungus using various glycols, principally propylene glycol and triethylene glycol. In principle, these chemical substances are ideal air disinfectants because they have both high lethality to microorganisms and low mammalian toxicity.
Filtering our extract below 3 microns to rid unwanted crap is the best we can do with our kitchen chemistry techniques. We trust a great deal in the supplier(s) of the tobacco to cure the tobacco properly; hopefully no mold in the process.
For 72 hours, I freeze whole leaf tobacco to kill off any possible bugs/larvae/eggs. Freezing does nothing to rid mold; it just goes into a dormant state. I visually inspect the leaf for mold prior to maceration; best I can do.
Take a look down the sample list of particles measured in microns:
Some of the ones listed are going to slip by a qualitative filter. I try not to dwell on it too much and keep reminding myself… well, at least I’m not willingly inhaling 600 to 7000 chemicals associated with prepackaged cigarettes.
I use a Whatmans qualitative paper filter (Grade 5 / 2.5 micron / slow) for my final filter process and (boil) sterilize all containers which store my extracts for the long haul. Thus far, I’ve encountered no issues with my extracts. Keeping things clean, filtering, and visually inspecting our product(s) is about all we can do to make sure our hobby is safe for consumption.
Mold and mold spores are >= 3 micron, and so is bone dust, which is really a good thing :]
I’m using 1.5 micron qualitative filters in a homemade vacuum rig. Box of 100 was only $15.
Ahlstrom 6100-0750 Qualitative Filter Paper, 7.5cm Diameter, 1.5 Micron, Slow Flow, Grade 610 (Pack of 100) http://a.co/69WVItP
The diameter is a tad larger than the basket on the AeroPress, but you can still smush it in there and no liquid will bypass the filter so long as you don’t stand on the plunger.
To get the filter (mostly) aligned, I invert the AeroPress cylinder on the table, lay the filter centered on the opening of the cylinder, lay the inverted basket on the filter with the tabs aligned with the notches in the AreoPress housing, then quickly press the the basket down over the filter.
Time-wise, takes about 1-1/2 hours to filter (what ended up as) 40mL of PG extract that was steeped about 30 dasy at about a 7:1 PG:Tobacco ratio.
Not bad, but I’ve graduated from this method.
Also, glad you mentioned the whole leaf. I was going to ask over on the Tobaccos thread for advice on how to process it for extraction. Would not have thought to freeze it.
Ahhh…another satisfied Aeropress user! Good for you. I love mine.
Me either. I had a conversation with a LeafOnly rep about why they didn’t have a particular leaf in stock… they said the past shipments of the leaf were ridden with eggs from a particular beetle… they wound up infesting their other stock. She told me about the freeze process. Alas, LeafOnly doesn’t purchase from that particular vendor anymore for good reason.
Hello everybody, I’m a newbie when it comes to DIY.
I have an inquiry, rather a concern TBH:
The tobacco leaves used for PG extraction, aren’t they processed with harmful chemicals?
I’m not talking about very high end top-notch cigars, which are expensive and not readily available. What concerns me is those commercially available tobaccos.
I hope I’m making sense.
Ps I myself am a HUGE tobacco fan.
Just a thought here guys, please bare with me:
Why didn’t “Big Tobacco” just switch from manufacturing ciggies into extracting nic and flavour and packaging them into e liquid?!
I mean they’d have had a huge lead over small beginning competitors, wouldn’t they?
Are they just deliberately interested in destroying the health of their customers?
Am I missing something here?!
Oh, another corporation frozen in time…
Reminds me of the car industry… Sticking to archaic gas guzzlers for ages… Till the Japs ate up most of the markets… Some people just wouldn’t learn, or maybe they don’t want to.
With this info in hand… now, we would just have to pin down the tobacco manufacturers/vendors about what exactly they use on their product. You and I will both be dead and cold in the grave before any single one of them give up that info! So… back to blithely putting tobacco in jars with PG, huh!