I know there are other, older threads, but a friend and I went into a long discussion about it last night and I think we hit some good points and came up with a reasonable answer. I've heard different stories about that smell... Ooh ooh, that smeeeeeelllll! 1. A dealer told me they actually spray a bit of vanilla extract into the case. 2. Someone posted it's off gassing from the nitro and glue they use in the case. *Having sprayed lacquer and used a variety of spray adhesives (I build flight cases for a living. Foam and fur lined both use the same adhesive and it does not smell like vanilla in any way) I find this one hard to believe* 3. I heard an urban legend, when Gibson first started making guitars they were nextdoor to a bakery or something and the smell of the baked good would flood the shop with an aroma that would permeate the cases so now it's done for nostalgia purposes So, here's my theory: Knowing first hand the fumes from adhesives, off gassing lacquers and solvents used for cleaning after applications of said materials, I believe, the cases are indeed sprayed with vanilla but for no other reason than to mask the smell of the chemicals used in production and clean up.