Smokeless Tobacco Date Codes (2024)

Across smokeless tobacco manufacturers, a variety of "sell by" or "made on" date codes are used. The following section will break these down by company.


  • 1 U.S. Smokeless
  • 2 American Snuff Co.
  • 3 Pinkerton Tobacco Co.
  • 4 National Tobacco Co.
  • 5 Swedish Match
  • 6 Lake Erie Tobacco Co.
  • 7 Swisher International
  • 8 Cheyenne International
  • 9 Philip Morris USA
  • 10 References

U.S. Smokeless[]

The U.S. Smokeless Tobacco Company uses a straightforward "sell by" date system, which is stamped on the bottom of each can of Skoal, Copenhagen, Red Seal, and Husky. Cans of Copenhagen Snuff, Long Cut, and Original Pouches have a somewhat shorter shelf life due to the fiberboard can. Skoal Snus, on the other hand, has a significantly longer shelf life.

American Snuff Co.[]

Smokeless Tobacco Date Codes (1)

The American Snuff Company uses a code system that corresponds to the date the product was packaged on cans of Grizzly, Cougar, Kodiak, and Hawken. The second to last character in the code refers to the month manufactured, and the last character refers to the year manufactured. Months run A through M, with A referring to January and M referring to December (the letter I is skipped). For example, a code of M9 would mean the product was manufactured in December 2019. Products should be returned by the retailer 6 months after the manufactured date (previously it was 5 months) In the example above, M9 cans should be taken off the shelf in May 2020.

Camel Snus uses the same code system with one exception, the product's shelf life is increased to 12 months. R.J. Reynolds' Vuse vapor also uses the same code system with a 12 month shelf life.

Pinkerton Tobacco Co.[]

The Pinkerton Tobacco Company, makers of Timber Wolf, Red Man, Longhorn, and others, also uses a code system. For example, a code on the bottom of a can may read "J158A0957". The first 4 characters are relevant: the J refers to the month of the year, with A = January, consecutively cycling through the alphabet and L = December; the next two digits refer to the day of the month; the fourth digit refers to the year. So, in the example above, the can is considered expired on October 15, 2018.

National Tobacco Co.[]

The National Tobacco Company, makers of Stoker's and other brands, uses a "sell by" date on its moist snuff cans and a code system on its chewing tobacco and dip tobacco tubs. An example of a code on a Stoker's chew product is "G240T1". The code follows essentially the same format as the Pinkerton codes shown above. The first character refers to the month of the year, A through L, in order beginning with January. The next two digits are the day of the month. The fourth digit refers to the year. In this example, the chew is "best before" July 24, 2020. The two final digits are not relevant to the date code and instead refer to the building and assembly line that the product originated from.

Swedish Match[]

On Swedish Match products not included in Pinkerton's system, including General Snus and Thunder X-treme Snus, include a "best before" date stamped on the bottom of the can.

Lake Erie Tobacco Co.[]

The Lake Erie Tobacco Company uses a "sell by" date stamped on the bottom of its cans. It is in a month and year format.

Swisher International[]

Swisher International has a stamped date code on the bottom of their moist snuff cans, or printed on the flap of their chewing tobacco.

How to decipher:

22 016 MP1 would be 2022 day 016 Moist Packaging 1

Year, 3 digit day of the year, plant manufactured.

Cheyenne International[]

Cheyenne International, the manufacturer of Derringer, Klondike, Decade, and Nordic Ice snus, has a production code system stamped on the bottom of its cans.


CN Smokeless (Cheyenne International) product: Klondike

Production Date Code Example: LOT G72411

Located on bottom of each can

First Letter=Month produced (G=July)

Second digit=year produced (7=2017) each

Good for 1 year

Philip Morris USA[]

On the former Marlboro Snus tins, a Julian date code system was used. For example, a code may have been "L133X1000". The first character, L, refers to its location. The next 3 digits are the Julian date, aka the day of the year manufactured. The next character, X, refers to the shift (which was either X, Y, or Z). The next digit, 1, refers to the year. The last three digits refer to the case packer. In the example above, the can was manufactured on the 133rd day of 2011 (May 13, 2011), with a 1 year shelf life.[1]


Smokeless Tobacco Date Codes (2024)


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