After the final fermentation, filler and binder leaves are usually wrapped in sackcloth bundles; or some equivalent material which "breathes" and will keep the tobacco together. In Cuba, wrapper leaves are traditionally wrapped up in tercios (palm bark bundles) that become hard like plastic when they dry out. This painstaking packaging process prepares the tobaccos for further aging, storage, and transportation.
Tobacco Añejamiento: this [critical] process of small batch packaging allows the tobacco leaves to slowly cure while being stored in warehouses. Without significant moisture, heat, and pressure, the vigorous process of fermentation is halted and the more gentle aging begins. The bundles and tericos are labeled with:
Barrel Añejamiento is a rare process where the tobaccos are aged in barrels. The video below shows the La Aurora barrel añejamiento process. Their 100 Años, 1495, and Preferido brand tobaccos undergo at least six months in an old rum barrel, after a minimum of three or four years añejamiento. While in the barrel, the temperature will not exceed 95˚F.
Añejamiento times vary according to leaf varieties, climate conditions, and even production quotas. In general...