Before Boveda, it was difficult, if not impossible to control humidity for moisture-sensitive products, like cigars, cannabis and wooden instruments.
Starts with a frustrated cigar lover. Keeping his cigars properly humidified was a job. That job was labor-intensive. That labor didn’t always work. It was the ’90s and he was limited to distilled water and sponges or distilled water and shot glasses or foam and chemicals. (Some people still use those one-way humidifying methods. We don’t know why. But that’s another story.)
So he called a guy to solve the problem. That guy was Dr. Albert Saari, a retired General Mills chemist. Saari found the answer in salt. Turns out salts keep a fixed relative humidity (RH) level. Supersaturate those salts with pure water and they humidify the surrounding air.
So Saari called a guy he knew, Robert Esse, a General Mills packaging specialist. Waterproof packages, no problem. Packages to let moisture pass in and out, never been done. So Esse found a material that had a high water-vapor transmission rate but stopped salt. Bingo! Let’s patent the packaging. (And patent it many times over around the world.)
So Esse and Saari called Sean Knutsen and Timothy Swail, two friends with business and marketing backgrounds to run the company. And in 1997, Boveda (then Humidipak) was born.
Boveda (pronounced Boh-veh-duh) invented the world’s first 2-way humidity control in a ready-to-use packet. Inside Boveda’s semipermeable membrane contains all-natural salts and purified water.
It’s all science. Mix certain salts with water and together they naturally regulate humidity. Boveda’s patented packaging allows the cleanest, most-purified water vapor to either be emitted or absorbed.
Boveda acts on the environment around it. By adding and absorbing moisture, Boveda keeps the contents of a sealed container at a precise relative humidity (RH) level. Cool, huh?
The number printed on Boveda are the RH%. Whatever product you’re storing calls for specific RH levels.