3. Tobacco Variety

There are over 3000 documented varieties of Nicotiana tabacum. They are all the same species, like domesticated dogs, but show a continuum of characteristics, depending on their genetic heritage. While “Virginia tobacco” may refer to a host of different varieties of tobacco intended to be flue-cured, Virginia Bright Leaf, for example, is the name of a specific variety. While “burley” is a market class of tobacco, Tennessee 89 (or TN 89) is a specific variety of burley, and different from TN 90. Varieties are being continually developed to alter various characteristics, such as specific disease resistance or dominance of nicotine production over that of nornicotine.