Snowflake Stage Exporter

Snowflake database loading utility with Scrapy integration.
Meant for streaming ingestion of JSON serializable objects into Snowflake stages and tables.


> pip install git+

Basic example

from snowflake_stage_exporter import SnowflakeStageExporter

with SnowflakeStageExporter(
) as exporter:
    exporter.export_item({'name': 'Jack', 'salary': 100}, item_type_name='employee')
    exporter.export_item({'name': 'Sal', 'salary': 90, 'extra_info': {'age': 20}}, item_type_name='employee')
    exporter.export_item({'title': 'Steel Grill', 'price': 5.5}, item_type_name='product')
    exporter.finish_export()  # flushes all stage buffers, creates tables and populates them with data inside stages

After you call finish() 2 tables will be created: EMPLOYEE (2 rows, 3 columns) and PRODUCT (1 row, 2 columns) located inside database MY_DATABASE and database schema PUBLIC (Snowflake default database schema).

Same thing achieved via Scrapy integration.

How this works

For each object that you feed into the exporter it will write it into a local buffer (temporary JSON file). Once a configurable maximum buffer size is reached the file is uploaded to Snowflake internal stage via PUT statement. Upon the end of the execution exporter will create all specified tables then instruct Snowflake to populate each table from every staged JSON file via COPY INTO <table> statements.

  • If you output to multiple tables then a buffer is maintained for each.
  • Alternatively you can create / populate tables as soon as the buffers are flushed via *_on parameters described below.
  • *_on parameters also allow you to disable any table creation / population and just deal with the stages yourself.
  • For table creation the exporter will try to figure out column types dynamically during execution, otherwise you can pass them explicitly via parameter.

Why “Stages”?

The use of local buffers and stages opposed to typical SQL INSERT statements is motivated largely by Snowflake performance implications and their billing model (see

An illustrative example can be a long running Scrapy / ScrapyCloud job that constantly outputs data. If the job was to keep the connection constantly executing the INSERTs – Snowflake would also keep the warehouse running / consuming the credits for the entire duration of the job.

Secondary consideration was for allowing the user to be able to work with purely just the stages like one would work with S3 or similar blob file storage. This covers cases when user would needs their own sophisticated table management approach and simply wants a convenient place to store raw data.

IMPORTANT NOTE: it won’t make much sense to use this library if you’re already working with S3 or similar storages (including just local machine) where your data is one of the Snowflake supported file formats. Snowflake has built-in support of ingesting several 3rd party blob storages and for local files you can upload them via PUT statements.


All of the configurations are done via arguments to main exporter class SnowflakeStageExporter.

  • user/password/account – Snowflake account credentials, passed as is to snowflake.connector.connect.
  • connection_kwargs – any additional parameters to snowflake.connector.connect.
  • table_path – table path to use.
    • If you specify database / database schema in connection_kwargs you won’t need to specify them in the table path.
    • The path can include template variables which are expanded when you feed an item to exporter. By default only item variable is passed (e.g. 'MY_DB.PUBLIC.TABLE_{item[entity_type]}' here it’s assumed all of your items have “entity_type” field).
    • Any additional variables you can pass yourself as keyword arguments when calling exporter.export_item().
    • Additionally in Scrapy integration the following fields are passed:
      • spider – spider instance.
      • item_type_nametype(item).__name__. In the basic example above you passed this explicitly yourself.
  • stagewhich internal stage to use. By default user stage ("@~") is used.
  • stage_path – naming for the files being uploaded to the stage.
    • By default it’s "{table_path}/{instance_ms}_{batch_n}.jl" where table_path is table_path with all variables resolved, instance_ms epoch milliseconds when exporter was instantiated and batch_n being sequential number of the buffer.
    • In Scrapy integration by default this is "{table_path}/{job}/{instance_ms}_{batch_n}.jl" where job is the key of the ScrapyCloud job or "local" if spider ran locally.
  • max_file_size – maximum buffer size in bytes. 1GiB by default.
  • predefined_column_types – dictionary of table_path to Snowflake columns types for table creation.
    • e.g. {"MY_DB.PUBLIC.PRODUCT": {"title": "STRING", "price": "NUMBER"}, "MY_DB.PUBLIC.EMPLOYEE": {"name": "STRING", "salary": "NUMBER", "extra_info": "OBJECT"}}.
  • ignore_unexpected_fields – ignore fields not passed in predefined_column_types during table creation / population.
    • True by default but only takes effect when table does have predefined column types.
    • The data is still exported in full to the staged files.
  • allow_varying_value_types – if False during table creation / population skip columns that had multiple value types.
    • True by default. VARIANT type is assigned to such column.
    • Error is logged when False and such column is encountered.
    • Takes effect only when there is a need for exporter to figure out the column type.
    • The data is still exported in full to the staged files.
  • create_tables_on – one of “finish/flush/never”. “finish” by default. “flush” is for each time a file is staged.
  • populate_tables_on – ditto.
  • clear_stage_on – same as above but “never” is default. Each file is removed from stage individually when enabled.

Configuration (Scrapy)

All of the exporter instance parameters are exposed as Scrapy settings like SNOWFLAKE_<UPPERCASE_PARAMETER_NAME> (e.g. SNOWFLAKE_MAX_FILE_SIZE).

Once a Scrapy job ends, all remaining buffers are flushed. If the job outcome is not “finished” (something went wrong) then no table creation / table population / stage clear takes place.


  • Unit tests >_>.
  • Test on windows?


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