Tobacco flakes, sliced from pressed plugs
Product nameTobacco
Source plant(s)Nicotiana
Part(s) of plantLeaf
Geographic originThe Americas
Active ingredientsNicotine, harmine
Legal status
  • AU: Unscheduled
  • CA: Unscheduled. 18+ (Federal)
  • UK: 16+ (Public Possession) 18+ (Purchase)
  • US: 18+ only in most states[1]
  • UN: Unscheduled
  • EU: Unscheduled
  • See tobacco control
Tobacco drying kiln in Myrtleford, Victoria, Australia, 2018. This kiln was built in 1957, and moved to Rotary Park in 2000. Kilns of this structure were made from the early 1930s through to the late 1960s.
Basma tobacco leaves drying in the sun at Pomak village in Xanthi, Greece

Tobacco is the common name of several plants in the Nicotiana genus and the Solanaceae (nightshade) family, and the general term for any product prepared from the cured leaves of the tobacco plant. More than 70 species of tobacco are known, but the chief commercial crop is N. tabacum. The more potent variant N. rustica is also used around the world.

Tobacco contains the stimulant alkaloid nicotine as well as harmala alkaloids.[2] Dried tobacco leaves are mainly used for smoking in cigarettes, cigars, pipes, shishas as well as e-cigarettes (both rechargeable and disposable), e-cigars, e-pipes and vaporizers. They can also be consumed as snuff, chewing tobacco, dipping tobacco and snus.

Tobacco use is a risk factor for many diseases; especially those affecting the heart, liver, and lungs, as well as many cancers. In 2008, the World Health Organization named tobacco use as the world's single greatest preventable cause of death.[3]


The English word "tobacco" originates from the Spanish and Portuguese word "tabaco". The precise origin of this word is disputed, but it is generally thought to have derived at least in part, from Taino, the Arawakan language of the Caribbean. In Taino, it was said to mean either a roll of tobacco leaves (according to Bartolomé de las Casas, 1552) or to tabago, a kind of L-shaped pipe used for sniffing tobacco smoke (according to Oviedo; with the leaves themselves being referred to as cohiba).[4][5]

However, perhaps coincidentally, similar words in Spanish, Portuguese and Italian were used from 1410 to define medicinal herbs believed to have originated from the Arabic طُبّاق ṭubbāq (also طُباق ṭubāq), a word reportedly dating to the 9th century, as a name for various herbs.[6][7]

Other Languages
Afrikaans: Tabak
Alemannisch: Tabak
አማርኛ: ትምባሆ
Ænglisc: Pīpwēod
العربية: تبغ شائع
aragonés: Tabaco
armãneashti: Tutumi
অসমীয়া: ধঁপাত
asturianu: Tabacu
تۆرکجه: توتون
বাংলা: তামাক
Banjar: Timbaku
Bân-lâm-gú: Ta-bá-koh
башҡортса: Тәмәке (сеймал)
беларуская: Тытунь (сыравіна)
беларуская (тарашкевіца)‎: Тытунь
български: Тютюн
brezhoneg: Butun
буряад: Тамхи
català: Tabac
chiShona: Fodya
Cymraeg: Tybaco
dansk: Tobaksvare
Deitsch: Duwack
Deutsch: Tabak
डोटेली: सुर्ती
Ελληνικά: Καπνός (φυτό)
español: Tabaco
Esperanto: Tabako
euskara: Tabako
فارسی: تنباکو
føroyskt: Tubbak
français: Tabac
Frysk: Tabak
Gaeilge: Tobac
한국어: 담배
हिन्दी: तम्बाकू
Ido: Tabako
Ilokano: Tabako
Bahasa Indonesia: Tembakau
íslenska: Tóbak
italiano: Tabacco
Jawa: Bako
ಕನ್ನಡ: ತಂಬಾಕು
ქართული: თამბაქო
қазақша: Темекі
Kiswahili: Tumbaku
Кыргызча: Тамеки
Latina: Tabacum
latviešu: Tabaka
lietuvių: Tabakas
Limburgs: Toebak
Lingua Franca Nova: Tabaco
magyar: Dohány
मैथिली: सुर्ती
മലയാളം: പുകയില
मराठी: तंबाखू
Bahasa Melayu: Tembakau
Mirandés: Tabaco
монгол: Тамхи
မြန်မာဘာသာ: ဆေးလိပ်
Nederlands: Tabak
नेपाली: सुर्ती
नेपाल भाषा: सुर्ति
日本語: たばこ
norsk: Tobakk
norsk nynorsk: Tobakk
Nouormand: P'tun
occitan: Tabat
ଓଡ଼ିଆ: ତମାଖୁ
oʻzbekcha/ўзбекча: Tamaki
ਪੰਜਾਬੀ: ਤਮਾਕੂ
پنجابی: تماکھو
português: Tabaco
română: Tutun
русский: Табак (сырьё)
Scots: Tabaccae
shqip: Duhani
සිංහල: දුම්කොළ
Simple English: Tobacco
slovenčina: Tabak (produkt)
slovenščina: Tobak
Soomaaliga: Buuri
کوردی: تووتن
српски / srpski: Дуван (производ)
srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: Duvan (proizvod)
suomi: Tupakka
svenska: Tobak
Tagalog: Tabako
தமிழ்: புகையிலை
татарча/tatarça: Тәмәке (чимал)
ไทย: ยาสูบ
ತುಳು: ಪುಗೆರೆ
Türkçe: Tütün
українська: Тютюн (сировина)
اردو: تمباکو
Vahcuengh: Go'ien
Võro: Tubak
West-Vlams: Toebak
Winaray: Tabakò
吴语: 烟草
ייִדיש: טאבאק
粵語: 煙草
žemaitėška: Tabuoks
中文: 烟草