Quality starts far away from the factory. In the warmer countries of the world.
the voyage from seed to cigar is a long and beautiful story...
De Olifant buys tobacco from tobacco fields in variour countries. The fields are different in size everywhere. Here you can see whole big tobacco plantation. In Java our tobacco is often grown in small rice fields.
Uniformity in the field greatly improves the quality of tobacco. This results into a refined and stable taste.
The shaded aerea's help to get big and thin wrapper leaves.
Full grown tobacco plants on Java are 2 meters high.
The lower tobacco leaves on the plant are used for wrapper leaf. They are the thinnest and largest leaves of the plant growing in the shade of the plant.
A Cuban tobacco farmer is harvesting tobacco here.
After harvest, the tobacco is hung in dry sheds. Here's a very big dry shed in Jember.
The drying of the tobacco in the drying shed lasts 21 days.
Then the tobacco loses most of its moisture.
And the color gradually changes from green to brown.
When the tobacco is dry, it is fermented into large piles.
Then the tobacco is sorted many times.
First, a block sorting, the tobacco is roughly sorted in wrapper, binder or broken leaves.
Then the tobacco is sorted two times by color
Then the last sortation is by size.
The the tobacco is weighed in 100 kg portions
Then the tobacco is packed in a cane mat.
All tobacco is pressed with a bale press to a compact bale.
De Olifant's purchasing team: Aart Dooyes, Rein Ravestein and Binette Brasser
Each filler is purely smoked to assess the quality.
All tobacco samples are carefully judged by structure, color and unevenness.
Sometimes the team judge 100 samples per day.
The smell of the dry tobacco is very important.
It must be fresh and sweet.
But the flavor of burning tobacco is also very important.
If the samples are good in the country of origin, they are sent to de Olifant.
There, all tobacco is processed and tasted and judged by our smoke panel in Kampen.
click the image to look at the factory
click the image to see how quality is guarded
click the image to see the process from leaf to cigar