What I find funny about that is every time I've asked a pipe shop about the sweetener I usually get the same reply. Which is what you said with the addition of there are a couple of customers that swear by the junk. I can't really comment never tried the product. But the one pipe I had that did go full on incurably sour the only thing that actually cured it was wet coffee grounds over night.It's like snake oil. Tobacconists learned to promote such gunk for, well, to sweeten their cash intake for the day.