The taxes that governments all around the world put on cigarettes are increasing day by day in hopes of reducing the number of tobacco use.
That is why a lot of smokers are gravitating more towards hand-rolled cigarettes which are cheaper and also easy to find.
A beedi or bidi is a kind of hand-rolled cigarette that is made out of coarse tobacco. It is one of the most popular types of cigarettes that originated from the Indian subcontinent.
In this article, we are going to give you knowledge regarding how bidis are made. Well then, let’s just jump into it right away.
Brief Introduction on How Bidis Is Made
Before we head straight to how this type of cigarette is made, we need to know what it really is. As we have said before, a bidi is a cigarette that is hand-rolled. It is filled with uncured tobacco or tobacco flake.
The tobacco flake will then be wrapped using a tendu leaf. The name bidi is quite interesting because it is derived from the word beeda which is a Marwari word where Marwar is a region in North-Western India.
The word beeda refers to betel nuts which are mixed with herbs and spices that are then wrapped with a leaf.
Why Is It Popular?
If you have been to India, you have probably seen bidis being sold or smoked everywhere. Because of how cheap and available they are, bidis are currently dominating the smoking market in India. Bidi smoking accounts for 48% of total tobacco use in India.
They even go as far as to say that for every cigarette smoked, ten bidis are smoked by Indians. Besides the fact that they are way cheaper than regular cigarettes, bidis are also popular because they are equated with esteem.
The word that they originated from, beeda, is also a symbol of esteem for people all across India. That is why Indians associate smoking bidi with respect and admiration, making bidis extremely popular in this country.
Other than that, India has medicinal systems such as Ayurveda that recommend inhalation of medicinal herbs that are rolled using leaves. Now, this has led to the belief that bidis might be good for health, allowing them to be very easily accepted by society.
The Ingredients of a Bidi
In this section of this article, we are going to tell you all about what bidis are made out of. At this point, we all know that bidis contain tobacco flakes that are wrapped in leaves.
However, did you know that bidis are actually made using two kinds of leaves? The first kind of plant leaf that is used in bidis is the Diospyros melanoxylon or tendu leaves.
This kind of leaf is also known as the Coromandel ebony or Easy Indian ebony leaf. You can easily find tendu leaves in India and Sri Lanka, seeing as they are native to those countries.
The Coromandel ebony tree is characterized by its hard and dry bark. The name Coromandel ebony actually derives from Coromandel, which is a coast in Southeastern India.
However, the locals usually refer them by its Hindi name which is tendu. The second type of leaf that is used to wrap bidis is the Bauhinia racemosa tree leaf.
This is a species of tree leaf that is commonly referred to as the Bidi leaf tree. The Bidi leaf tree is a species of medicinal flowering shrub that has quite a religious importance.
The Bidi leaf tree is a small tree that can grow up to 5 meters. You can find this tree in tropical Southeast Asia since it is native there.
How Bidis Is Made Process
Now, this is probably the part that you have been waiting for which is the part where we tell you how bidis is made.
You might think that bidis are made simply by wrapping tobacco flakes using some leaves. However, the process is actually quite long and definitely more complicated than that.
First of all, because bidis are hand-rolled cigarettes, the process of making them involves a lot of workers. And by a lot, we meant a lot. More than four million Indian people work every single day making bidis for a living.
The process of making bidi cigarettes starts off by rolling coarse tobacco with tendu leaves that have been dried. The end of the cigarette is then tied with a string. After that, they are stacked and roasted in order to remove the moisture.
This process will also stiffen the bidis and add sweet aroma and flavor to them. Bidis actually came in several different flavors such as vanilla, mango, cheery, chocolate, and cinnamon. These various flavors add variety points to bidis, making them quite attractive to consumers.
After the roasting process is complete, they are packed in colorful packaging that will definitely attract consumers, especially young people.
Bidis do not have filters which is why they might contain more nicotine than regular cigarettes.
Bidis are a type of hand-rolled cigarettes that are very popular in India. It is a cigarette that is made up of tobacco leaves that are wrapped in tendu leaves. It is preferred by Indian smokers because of how cheap it is.
Other than that, bidis also have attractive traits such as having different types of flavors that you can choose from. The process of making bidis involves wrapping tobacco flakes in tendu leaves, roasting them, and packing them into colorful packaging to attract people to buy them.
Although it is believed to have medicinal properties, bidis might actually contain more nicotine than regular cigarettes because of the fact that they do not have filters on them.
However, it is still the most popular local hand-rolled cigarette in India because of its availability. Hopefully, by now you have already known how bidis is made.