Snuff is available in dry powder and moist forms and marketed in small tins as well as sachets like that of betel nuts and their prices vary depending on quality.
Long after the WHO’s Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) came into force in early 2005, India continues to be a major exporter of snuff which was identified as a growing socio-economic and health concern in the low and lower-middle income countries along with other types of ‘smokeless tobacco’.
Snuff is being produced and exported in sizable quantities from India but it goes largely unregulated around the world as the governments spent most of the time and resources on curbing manufacturing and consumption of tobacco in the dominant form of cigarettes. The production figures of snuff come to the notice of the tobacco board only when the exporters apply for registration. This is about export quality snuff.
Substantial quantities of this hazardous substance are produced and sold in the country under different brand names.
This is the grey area so far as regulation of snuff consumption is concerned as total production remains a guess-work because the manufacturers are not obligated to furnish that information except when they get to export the commodity.
Coming to exports, India has exported 43, 31 and 17 tons of snuff respectively to the USA, United Arab Emirates (UAE) and UK in 2010-11.