Or the real question should be, what isn’t Exude? The majority of plastics made today are produced the same way. A softener is added to a harder plastic similar to PVC. Color and sometimes scent and salt are also added, and the whole lot is heated. This mixture is then poured into a mold and allowed to cool. Voila, you have a plastic lure. OK, maybe it’s not that easy, but almost!
Sometimes the scent is added to the plastic itself, while other times it’ s just added to the mold to help the plastic come out of the mold easier, thus acting as a release agent. Nearly all of the time this scent is an oil base. If you know much about fish biology, you know that for a fish to be able to smell something, the product it’s trying to smell needs to be water soluble (able to dissolve easily in water).
Unfortunately, oil does not dissolve in water; hence fish cannot smell the lure being used. Once a fish eats your lure, it can then taste the oils, because of the make up of the mouth of the fish. In essence, these scents can help you catch more fish. Often these scented lures will cause fish to hold on longer; thus, you catch more fish.
However, the lure being scented did not help in you getting the bite.
Salt is often added for a couple of reasons: first and foremost is to add scent and taste, I know I like salt on my food. People often argue that blood is very salty tasting and that can act as an attractor to fish, yet after you have made a few casts, all the salt has dissolved off the outside of the lure. Yes, there is still salt inside the plastic, yet there is no way of getting that salt to the edge of the lure for more scent and taste. It’s merely trapped inside the plastic.
If you leave a normal plastic lure in a bucket of water and check it again in a period of a year, you will notice its grown in size. It has actually absorbed some water, definitely not allowed any of the infused salt or scent to escape. The second reason salt is added to plastics is because of weight. Salt weighs more than the plastic, so the higher the salt content the heavier and faster sink rate you get from that plastic.
In exchange for scent and taste, you often get a lure that is very fragile and doesn¹t last for more than a fish or two.
In steps Exude, a plastic, if that¹s what you want to call it, like no other. Exude’s chemical make up is nothing like most plastics, it is minimally plastic; the majority of its composition is proteins, minerals, and amino acids, fish food. Food shaped and colored just like your normal plastics. If you were to take an Exude lure and place it in water and return to find it a year later, not only would it not be larger like the other plastic you put in water, it would be mostly gone.
Water is the active ingredient in Exude, so leaving the package open does not make it go bad. Even if you use a lure, if you dry it off when you are done with it you can put it back in the package to last forever.
When you make a cast with Exude, a water soluable scent trail is activated that the fish can actually smell and taste. You will notice that The lure will feel slimy. If you think about all the natural bait you use(IE Minnows, frogs, leeches worms), they all share something in common: slime.
Exude has this same natural feel when wet.
Exude also manufactures a formulation known as Exude +Extream. This Exude consists of Micro-salt technology. Each time you cast Exude + Extream in the water, the outer shell is constantly shedding off, releasing more salt and scent each cast, not just the first one or two like most salt impregnated lures. Exude +Extream is the only soft plastic in which the inner salt eventually finds its way into the water.
Is Exude the end all of all soft plastics? No, it has its problems too. Because of its slime, it is more difficult to keep on a hook. I have found that using hooks with larger bends in them, like the Mustad G- lock hook, or hooks that have screw locks on them help to secure Exude plastic much more effectively. Exude also does not taste all that good to humans-- one trip fishing with Exude is all it took me to break the habit of biting the top part of my lure off to re-rig it. I now carry a scissors in my pocket at all times for that job.
I do know this for sure: when I fish with Exude, I am more confident that I am going to get bit and catch more fish.
Give it a shot, and formulate your own opinion!
***Deitz is a Senior Pro Staffer for Mister Twister - Exude