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Is this Mold on Kendall Plug?

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    64alex

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    I just purchased a SG Kendall Plug and I am afraid it has mold on it. I don't think it is plum. As from the attached pics it is on the two sides of the plugs extending from the corner. What do you think, really mold?



    Posted 9 months ago #
  2. bazungu

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    Definitely looks like mold to me! I would contact the seller and ask for a refund. I have only seen mold on my tobacco once, and I could immediately tell because of the really funky smell.

    Posted 9 months ago #
  3. jrenko

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    Looks like free penecillin
    Honestly it looks a bit wierd. Send the pictures to the seller and they will mostly likely give you a new one.

    Posted 9 months ago #
  4. unadoptedlamp

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    To me, it is a bit suspicious because it is not uniform. But to complicate it, from the pictures, it doesn't look obviously fuzzy... the picture is fuzzy.

    With plum, you will often see crystals. They obviously shine.

    I ordered this bulk size (Gawith Bright CR flake) from a retailer and when I opened it up, it was almost like a dusting of powdered sugar. Obviously glinting in the light. It covered every flake (even in the middle of the block) and was entirely uniform. I don't age my tobaccos, but I have had some tins with age over the years by chance, and it is always the same. Crystals. But... I primarily smoke flakes. No idea what ribbon cuts might look like.

    Your block, I think, should be similar.

    Because it is not uniform, I'd think it is suspect. If it's not shining with crystals, doubly so.

    Posted 9 months ago #
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    erhardt85

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    The picture isn't clear but plume would not stand out from the tobacco. Mold grows out and is 3 dimensional. Usually hairy. Plume usually lays flat and is two dimensional and often has tiny crystals that should shine when you move it under a good light. I have seen such an abundance of plume on old FVF that I wasn't sure. If you could post a high definition pic or send a high definition pic that would help.

    Posted 9 months ago #
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    erhardt85

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    Maybe put a chunk in a jar and wait a few days. I've had some weird experiences with mold on best brown flake where it was hard to tell when I examined it out of my jar but when it was sealed in my jar it had more fur and was more obvious. Very strange.

    Posted 9 months ago #
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    64alex

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    Still confused. Id does not smell bad, it is scratched easily by nails and on the eyes it looks 2D and not hairy 3D. However at high pics resolution it looks a little bit flurry and it is strange the location in two well defined areas.
    I try to post two higher res pics.


    Posted 9 months ago #
  8. mikestanley

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    I say no. It looks like something very common to Virginias from Gawith. Does it smell musty ? If you have a magnifying glass, mold will have stalks. To this looks fine.
    Mike S.

    Posted 9 months ago #
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    erhardt85

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    Damn it's still really hard to tell even with higher resolution images. It's hard to tell in person sometimes. Hmm... I have a few thoughts nonetheless. First I don't really like the look of that. I don't understand why there would be that much plume on a new product. I've never seen that much plume on a freshish Virginia. Maybe if it was a few years old. My bright CR flake is covered in plume but it's not really white yet. It seems to be isolated to a couple areas. If it were me I would err on the side of caution or find a trusted pipe smoker in your local area to check it out. To be fair I'm not normal though.

    Posted 9 months ago #
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    erhardt85

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    Mike Stanley had good advice. Bust out a magnifying glass. A good one. That should clear things up. You'll be able to see the "hairs" or tubes then

    Posted 9 months ago #
  11. jpmcwjr

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    Those photos may have lots of pixels/hi-rez, but the focus is soft. (Camera phone? You may be too close.)

    Having no funky odor is a good thing, but doesn't assure it's not mold. But my bet is it's bloom.

    I know that you believe you understood what you think I said, but I'm not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant.
    Posted 9 months ago #
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    64alex

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    [I've never seen that much plume on a freshish Virginia. Maybe if it was a few years old.]

    It's purchased new but the box code is 07 261 which, if I am correct, the production date would August 7, 2017, so it is actually more than 1 year old.
    I will look for a good magnification lens as I don't have one on my hands.

    Posted 9 months ago #
  13. hoosierpipeguy

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    I seriously doubt that is mold. Not sure it is plume either. I have some 6 year old tins of BBF and FVF that look similar. I've smoked a number of them. Perhaps you're overthinking it.

    Posted 9 months ago #
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    64alex

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    I got better pictures with better lighting on the sun which I uploaded below at different magnifications. Well still confusing as most of the stuff appears crystals but at high magnification there are some structures I pointed with the arrows I don't know if they are the hairs/tubes we are talking about. What do you think?




    Posted 9 months ago #
  15. peckinpahhombre

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    Looks like mold to me.

    I am naturally suspicious on the age old mold vs plume/bloom debate. In the cigar world, people often say their cigars have plume/bloom and in 99% of the cases it is some sort of mold or fungi. One cigar forum site even sent a large number of different cigars to a lab and all came back as mold/fungi, although different strains were found. They have yet to find plume or mold. I hope pipe tobacco is different, but until I see a laboratory analysis, my natural inclination is to assume mold.

    Posted 9 months ago #
  16. peckinpahhombre

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    And just for the record, I am a funguy.

    Posted 9 months ago #
  17. jpmcwjr

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    Yeah, well, it looks like there's a fungus among us. Been waiting since the 5th grade to use that in context.

    Yes, those photos say mold to me, though far far from an expert in fungi.

    Posted 9 months ago #
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    erhardt85

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    Thanks for the higher quality pictures. I'm sorry to say that it doesn't look good Alex. I wouldn't smoke that it it were me. Some people would smoke it anyways but I think that's a very poor risk benefit analysis. Mold can have severe health effects. Hope you find some more dark plug that's good. Personally it's pretty high on my list. I love dark flake and their other dark fired bl blends.

    Posted 9 months ago #
  19. sparroa

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    It looks pretty suspicious to me. Hard call to make but I would share your concerns if I was in the same boat...

    Posted 9 months ago #
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    64alex

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    Given it was just purchased from a respected shop I will contact the shop asking for a replacement. Will keep you posted on the outcome.

    Posted 9 months ago #
  21. mikestanley

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    Wow. Those new photos tell a different tale. That looks like mold.
    Mike S

    Posted 9 months ago #
  22. unkleyoda

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    Mold


    So you say you can drink? Well, I'm from Wisconsin. Try to keep up.
    Posted 9 months ago #
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    64alex

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    I sent the pics to the seller. They aknowledged it is mold and they are sending a replacement.

    Posted 9 months ago #
  24. cosmicfolklore

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    I am naturally suspicious on the age old mold vs plume/bloom debate. In the cigar world, people often say their cigars have plume/bloom and in 99% of the cases it is some sort of mold or fungi. One cigar forum site even sent a large number of different cigars to a lab and all came back as mold/fungi, although different strains were found. They have yet to find plume or mold.

    We also had a guy on this forum send some plumed tobacco to his son or someone who did a lab analysis of it, and said that it was minerals. I have also seen someone post some lab results saying that it was sugars.

    I am just suspicious of any forum lab tests being done and posted, period. People get hung up over supporting their theories. And, we cannot verify the lab, nor the results. And, there are things like how broad was the sample of the tobaccos taken that were tested? How many different labs participated in the analysis? With there being thousands of different tobaccos, and potentially multiple causes for the plum or mold, you'd need hundreds of samples to get semi-reliable, verifiable results.

    Michael
    Posted 9 months ago #
  25. peckinpahhombre

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    Cosmic, I am no scientist. You can read the thread re cigars and decide for yourself:

    https://www.friendsofhabanos.com/forum/topic/131757-foh-mould-study/

    Posted 9 months ago #
  26. cosmicfolklore

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    I have seen it, and read through it.
    So, this puts you off any tobaccos found with plume or bloom on it in your cellar?

    Posted 9 months ago #
  27. peckinpahhombre

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    Nope, doesn't put me off it at all. Just makes me a bit of a skeptic, that's all, but I'm not anal about it. I also think that pipe tobacco may be a bit different because almost all pipe tobacco is topped, and any residual sugar in the topping might well crystalize into a white substance as the tobacco ages. Aged stonehaven often has a white residue on it, but it is not fuzzy in any way and my suspicion is that it is just the remnants of the treacle that is used to top SH. In any event, whatever it is, it doesn't taste or smell funny, and therefore I have no issue smoking it.

    Posted 9 months ago #
  28. cosmicfolklore

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    Yeh, that's my threshold. If it smells funny, I won't smoke it.

    Posted 9 months ago #
  29. unadoptedlamp

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    That link to the cigars was interesting. It all looked like obvious mould to me and I was surprised there was any other offered explanation for it. I wouldn't smoke any of those cigars. They're mouldy!

    In aged pipe tobacco, I've only ever considered the presence of crystallized sugars as being what people thought of as "good" or as a visual indicator of well aged tobacco... primarily in flakes.

    Frankly, I had no idea that people also considered a blanket of white or other colour of fuzz/haze/fog/whatnot (or anything other than an obvious crystalline -sugar- presence) as a potential positive thing. To me, it was always mould.

    How could anything not sugar like in appearance (glinting like crystals, which to my eye, most moulds do not share this property) not be some kind of mould?

    What do people think it is?

    I mean, other than some kind of unspecific "plume" or "bloom," which obviously, doesn't say much. I simply never looked up the word plume. Mould, being not dissimilar to a feather like substance makes a hell of a lot of sense now. I just figured you were all yammering on about sugar crystals whenever those words got tossed around!

    Posted 9 months ago #
  30. jpmcwjr

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    I mean, other than some kind of unspecific "plume" or "bloom," which obviously, doesn't say much. I simply never looked up the word plume.

    That's good, because plume is the shape of a dispersion. Bloom is the correct word for those crystalline structures.

    Mould, being not dissimilar to a feather like substance makes a hell of a lot of sense now. I just figured you were all yammering on about sugar crystals whenever those words got tossed around!

    Oh, and yammer we do.

    Posted 9 months ago #
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    erhardt85

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    Usually it's pretty clear whether or not it's mold or bloom. Like in this case. If not it usually reveals itself more clearly over a short period of time. Bloom doesn't mean much to me. I've had a lot of bloom covered flakes that weren't particularly exciting.

    Posted 9 months ago #
  32. cosmicfolklore

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    +1 erhardt, I have never sensed anything remarkable about bloom/plume. It doesn’t neccesarily taste sweeter, and really tastes the same as regular old aged tobacco, sometimes better than fresh, sometimes not. Nothing to get excited about.

    Posted 9 months ago #
  33. hoosierpipeguy

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    I suspect most people breath in way more mold spores each day than you'd ever get from smoking that tobacco. Unless it smells bad, I wouldn't have any problem smoking it. If it tastes good, I'd smoke it all. I'm sucking 6 to 8 bowls of smoke into my body each day, I'm not too concerned about some incinerated mold spores. But that's just me.

    Posted 9 months ago #
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    erhardt85

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    I can't erase some of the horror stories from my thoughts about breathing in mold spores. Probably nonsense but still haha.

    Posted 9 months ago #
  35. cosmicfolklore

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    Maybe mold spores do something to you, like some other gross things... like maybe licking toads. The first guy to look at a frog and wonder what it would be like to lick it, doesn't bother me. It's the guy who did it, and told his friends, "you gotta try this!" That's the guy that has an interesting story.

    Posted 9 months ago #
  36. hoosierpipeguy

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    Many people eat Frog's Legs though and enjoy them. They're cooked first. As are alleged mold spores on tobacco.

    Posted 9 months ago #
  37. cosmicfolklore

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    I love frog legs. I also love chicken legs, but I have yet to have the urge to lick a chicken either, ha ha.

    If 170F is the temperature that kills mold, most tobacco never get heated that high. At least most of the tobacco types that I prefer never get heated that high.

    Posted 9 months ago #
  38. hakchuma

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    Its mold. Cut some of it off and smoke it
    That's what I did with my Cajun kake and it was fine. Its mold mold mold. Anfew years ago it was considered sugar lol until that was pretty much debunked. Its mold.

    "From tempers be it known that we are warm in the fields of battle and cool in the hours of debate"

    - Pushmataha, Choctaw Chief
    Posted 9 months ago #
  39. cosmicfolklore

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    until that was pretty much debunked.

    I am curious. You believe that a bunch of cigars, having reported to be mold, overrides several posts on here with lab results that say it is a mineral? Are cigar forums more trustworthy? Is everything about cigars thusly apply to pipe tobacco? I just want to make sure I sheepishly follow the herd on this. I'd hate to be caught thinking or anything.

    Posted 9 months ago #
  40. crashthegrey

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    Having read that entire thread and all of the results which allegedly debunked this, I am not convinced. Did they find that all tobacco has some mold on it, generally yes. Did they show that there are no mineral deposits, no. They tested for what they wanted to find and found it. But there was no mass spec result shown for the minerals that were also likely present. An analogy, if I am convinced that there is green dye in my beverage, I can spill it on my white shirt to show you how green it dyes my shirt. I have not, however, proven that this means there is no sugar in that drink. Just my humble opinion.

    Posted 9 months ago #
  41. cosmicfolklore

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    The problem with people's perceptions of science is that one experiment does not "prove" anything that applies to the world at large. It requires being done over and over. There was a article that stated that French people have less obesity than Americans, and French people drink wine, and thus wine keeps your heart healthy and helps you control your weight. There was no science in the article, but people will still claim that wine is healthy for your heart. But, the article never told you that the French walk more, drink more water, and eat healthier than Americans.

    For it to be even worthy of being called science, they would have to test maybe a thousand cigars. A handful of cigars does not make a study. Then the study has to be redone by another lab to test the reliability of the first. Then on and on... NOTHING has been debunked. It was a great post with pictures and big words. Don't fall for the glitter and bullshit.

    Posted 9 months ago #
  42. crashthegrey

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    Notice that I didn't even mention above that I am a chemist. That has zero to do with my statement. I won't even address that study from a scientific standpoint. Thus my analogy. But again, just an opinion. I don't care if someone believes it, I just warn against why I don't.

    Posted 9 months ago #
  43. hakchuma

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    I don't really care what you follow. That's not my problem.

    Posted 9 months ago #
  44. balkisobrains

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    Get a decent handheld microscope, it makes it easy to see what a lot of that stuff looks like. I have an old Tasco 30x with a light in it. But from the last pic, OPs looks like something that shouldn't be there. If you just bought it, then take it up with the retailer.

    Posted 9 months ago #
  45. hoosierpipeguy

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    From a Google Search, tobacco burns at approximately 900 degree F. If you think it will burn at 175 degrees, sit it in the oven, set the oven at 175 degrees and see how long it takes to ignite. Try it again at 350, then at 525 if your oven will go that high. A similar Google search showed that most molds are killed at temperatures of 212 degrees.

    I think it is safe to say that in the photos shown by the OP, 99% of the volume of that plug (or more) were tobacco leaving less than 1% allegedly being mold. I apologize for being a cynic but it seems logical to be a lot more concerned about the damage caused by the 99% + tobacco than the sub 1% content of mold that will be incinerated before entering your body.

    For those that are concerned about the alleged mold in the OP photos, I would highly recommend you do not visit farms, stockyards, food processing facilities, distribution centers, prep areas in grocery stores or the kitchens in most restaurants. You will starve to death within 3 months.

    Posted 9 months ago #
  46. olkofri

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    Hmm, I've thought about the fire killing it too, BUT, the entire chamber contents aren't ignited all at once. Temperatures might be 900 atop, but they're much lower in the distillation zone and even less in the unburnt zone, yet the air is passing through those areas when drawing, thus potentially pulling unkilled mold into one's mouth and beyond. I wouldn't risk it.

    Spores are also highly resistant to temperature extremes. Fungi are tough basterds!

    Not the sweet, new grass with flowers is this harvesting of mine;
    Not the upland clover bloom...
    Posted 9 months ago #
  47. bluto

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    Hey coz , don’t get hung up on a study or research project worth millions of dollars

    Or ànalyzing a few lab sample and showing the results

    Both have value

    “listen: there’s a hell
    of a good universe next door; let’s go”
    Posted 9 months ago #
  48. bluto

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    ..potentially pulling unkilled mold into one's mouth and beyond. I wouldn't risk it.

    There is that

    So why not just warm the entire thing up to kill off the spores and enjoy ..

    Posted 9 months ago #
  49. crashthegrey

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    Bluto, I don't know if you have looked at the "study" in question, but the problem is not money. It is two-fold. Reproducibility, and the fact that they didn't test for anything but mold.

    Posted 9 months ago #
  50. bluto

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    That’s what I’m saying , it’s not a study

    Its a result from an analysis

    Posted 9 months ago #
  51. cosmicfolklore

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    Ha ha, I think what Crash was saying, is that if asked to find something, we don't necessarily find out what the white stuff is, exactly, but we find out if and what molds are present. That doesn't necessarily mean the white stuff is the particular mold, since mold spores are found all over tobacco. So, of course they will find mold.

    I hope that makes sense. I would have thought Crash to be better at esplainin' stuff than me.

    Posted 9 months ago #
  52. crashthegrey

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    Don't count my eggs before they are hatched, Cosmic. I am not good at much.

    Posted 9 months ago #
  53. cosmicfolklore

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    I’m good for nothing, but that has never stopped me, ha ha!

    Posted 9 months ago #
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    erhardt85

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    The takeaway here should be that it's not advisable to smoke pipe Tobacco with mold on it. I'm gonna have to trade some scientific papers on this

    Posted 9 months ago #
  55. bluto

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    I recall , not long ago , there was something in the news about E. coli found in flour . So they got the contaminated bags off the shelf , pretty much how they sometimes discover listeria in prepared meats or bacteria in lettuce etc .

    Anyhoo , the upshot was , they later determined there is always E. coli in flour , simply because its in the soil and thru thrashing and harvesting it’s always going to be there .

    Long story short , don’t eat raw flour , for example raw cookie dough. After the flour is baked all the bacteria is destroyed and it’s safe again. Is there mold and germs on food , yes obviously .

    But that’s not to say it’s always harmful and there is nothing stopping people from washing their fruit or heating their meats.

    Carry on

    Posted 9 months ago #
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    erhardt85

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    A magnificent example of why analogies aren't very good at proving a point. It's true that you can probably find some mold spores in all tobacco, especially on the stems, but there is the question of viability. Even if put in good growing conditions little more than half might grow. So yes, maybe there are toxina anyways but there would be more toxic material on tobacco with provably viable mold spores in the right conditions. The vast majority of time s don't fit that description.

    Posted 9 months ago #
  57. bluto

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    example of why analogies aren't very good at proving a point.

    But it’s not an analogy and there is no point to prove

    I often have no point , it’s a part of my charm

    Posted 9 months ago #
  58. hoosierpipeguy

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    The takeaway here should be that it's not advisable to smoke pipe Tobacco with mold on it

    That wasn't my takeaway. If you wish to be technical about it, it's not advisable from a health perspective to smoke pipe tobacco period. I saw nothing factual in this thread that would point to any health issues from smoking the tobacco shown in the OP aside from the normal potential hazards with smoking pipe tobacco. Were I to be concerned, it would be about the 99.99% that was tobacco, not the .01% that was allegedly mold. If the OP wants to send me that Kendall Plug, I'll gladly smoke it.

    Posted 9 months ago #
  59. bluto

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    Can’t they just shoot holes in it with a gun and move on

    Posted 9 months ago #
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    erhardt85

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    You're a free man I guess.
    [url=https://www.moldsafesolutions.com/mold-tobacco/][/url]

    Posted 9 months ago #
  61. hoosierpipeguy

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    Well there you have it, another article adding on to the dangers of smoking cigarettes and tobacco products. I'm convinced now. I've smoked numerous tins of tobacco that had significantly more white stuff on it than in the OP photos. Haven't died yet, perhaps though I should be updating my will.

    If people don't wish to smoke tobacco with alleged mold on it, their choice. I just find it humorous how smoking pipe tobacco is overthought so much and so much consideration for mold is given, for health reasons, when smoking a tobacco product.

    Posted 9 months ago #
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    erhardt85

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    I promise I'm not going to continue beating a dead horse forever, but there is a distinct difference between the dangers of smoking tobacco and the unique dangers of smoking potentially mold infested tobacco. I don't think they mean merely shaving a couple years off when they say deadly. Nor do I think it's a conspiracy against us or something. I guess the thing keeping me here is the lack of any reward of significance to offset the added risk. Maybe it I had something aging for 20+ years and one flake had a few spots of mold I would remove it and smoke the rest, but for something newer I just toss the jar/tin. I guess theres a fundamental difference in the thought process here. Nothing personal. On a side note that dark plug looks disgusting with that mold.

    Posted 9 months ago #
  63. hoosierpipeguy

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    erhardt, I can't dispute your reasoning. I grew up in a rural area, did a fair amount of farming, we had a huge garden... point is, I'm not that squeemish about a little mold. I also now own a Restoration/Construction company and see how much mold many people breath in every day from their own homes and do nothing about it. When was the last time you had your ductwork vacuumed and cleaned?

    Posted 9 months ago #
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    erhardt85

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    For the first time in 40 years very recently had the ducts cleaned. I completely understand you @Hoosierpipeguy. The chances of something going horribly wrong are pretty low. We are bathing in an ocean of mold every day. I appreciate the added context. Maybe I'm just a little paranoid haha.

    Posted 9 months ago #
  65. jpmcwjr

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    The interesting thing about the piece above is it's sponsored by a company that sells "mold solutions".

    Posted 9 months ago #
  66. hoosierpipeguy

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    Actually, we don't sell mold solutions. We work more at keeping the moisture out so mold doesn't form to begin with. I've just seen enough of what goes on through our construction experience.

    Posted 9 months ago #
  67. cosmicfolklore

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    I just know that if the tobacco looks moldy and smells off, I'm not anxious about smoking it. But, if an aged tin has some crystals on it, and it smells good, I'll smoke it. I heard a comedian talk about how in his day, people didn't die from peanut allergies. They just had unexplained deaths. Maybe we just don't hear about people dying from smoking a moldy tin of an aged Virginia flake, because it happens with an unexplained death? I'm not going to talk someone into smoking a tin of something that their gut instinct is that it is moldy. I'm also not going to dissuade someone from smoking what their guts says will be yummy. Mold, crystals, sugars, or some chemical reaction that is yet explained, you really just have to do what your gut says. Mine says that I should probably have my ducts cleaned. I had no idea that was a thing.

    Posted 9 months ago #
  68. hoosierpipeguy

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    Michael, over 90% of the roofs I see are not anywhere close to being ventilated properly. So you end up with an attic full of humid, stagnant air which is a breeding ground for all kinds of organisms.

    Posted 9 months ago #
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    64alex

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    I let the thread run as it unfolded very interesting and amusing.
    Now this is the update on the molded Kendall plug. First of all the retailer demonstrated to be up to its good reputation as they recognized the mold and a replacement plug was sent which I should receive in few days.

    About the molded plug. I suspect the mold might come not from the baccy itself but probably from being stored close to some wet area. If you see the pics of the plug at the beginning of the thread the mold is actually in two adjacent sides of the plug and being the production date of August of last year it is reasonable it might be stored close to something wet which developed the mold on the plug. If it is so the plug might be salvageable. So based on this:
    1. I cut a thick flake out of the molded area in order to remove the mold and now I have a plug with no apparent mold.
    2. I will leave the plug open in the air 1 or 2 weeks in order to dry a little bit on the outside to inhibit any residual invisible mold.
    3. After that I am thinking prior to jarring the plug putting it in a ziplock/vacuum bag for maybe 6 months checking for any mold growth.
    4. If everything will be fine I will jar it and keep untouched likely for many years given the replacement plug will give me plenty of baccy for a long time.
    5. If everything will go as I hope I might end up with a nice plug in few years from now.

    What do you think of this plan? Any suggestions?

    Posted 9 months ago #
  70. sparroa

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    I would not risk it, myself.

    Is that a chance you want to take for a plug that is already going to be replaced?

    Posted 9 months ago #

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