Spruce gum is a chewing material made from the resin of spruce trees. In North America, spruce resin was chewed by Native Americans, and was later introduced to the early American pioneers and was sold commercially by the 19th century, by John B. Curtis amongst others. In the 20th century, commercial spruce tree processing turned to paper manufacturing to meet demand from the newspaper industry, thereby reducing the availability of spruce for other purposes, including spruce gum. Today, it is available in small batches made at home rather than commercially. It is often flavored with mint or fruit. It is also found in nature and is far less expensive than purchasing a small batch. Spruce gum is primarily used to heal deep cuts and sores in the Dene culture.