A tobacco pouch is a pouch used to hold tobacco. They are often made out of leather, and once were made of sealskin. Rolling and pipe tobacco is often sold in a plastic pouch. The person who purchases the tobacco, if they own a tobacco pouch, will then transfer the tobacco from the plastic pouch to their leather one.
Tobacco pouches date back to traditional Japan, and appear in artwork dating back to the 17th century. They were also made in Canada in the early 1900s. A tobacco pouch is a vital clue in the Sherlock Holmes short story The Adventure of Black Peter. Along with boots, tobacco pouches were the one of the first uses of the zip.
Sir Walter Raleigh, an English explorer and one of the first to popularise tobacco smoking in England, kept a tobacco pouch with a Latin inscription: Comes meus fuit in illo miserrimo tempore ("It was my companion at that most miserable time").
Use in crime
Commercial tobacco pouches have been produced in order to provide legitimacy to counterfeit tobacco. £8million of tobacco pouches were seized in Merseyside in 2012. Tobacco pouches, fake or genuine, have also been the target of burglaries in Bury St Edmunds in 2013. Tobacco pouches have also been used to store drug paraphernalia, including cannabis. In New Zealand prisons, nicotine-deprived prisoners can pay up to $300 for a pouch of tobacco.
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- Gene Borio. "Tobacco Timeline: The Seventeenth Century-The Great Age of the Pipe". Tobacco.org. Retrieved 29 October 2012.
- "Sir Walter Raleigh's tobacco pouch". Wallace Collection. Retrieved 1 November 2012.
- Peter Elson (12 May 2012). "Merseyside police seize huge haul of fake tobacco pouches". Liverpool Echo. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
- "Burglars steal a pouch of tobacco after targeting two neighbouring homes in Bury St Edmunds - Latest News". Bury Free Press. 25 February 2013. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
- Wilkinson, Graeme (9 March 2013). "Men fight in street in Garnant after Wales V France rugby game". This is South Wales. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
- "Pouch of tobacco $300 in prison | Otago Daily Times Online News : Otago, South Island, New Zealand & International News". Odt.co.nz. 22 September 2012. Retrieved 1 July 2013.