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Making Cigarettes

What’s in a Cigarette?

Our cigarettes are produced in factories across the world, and each brand has its own unique recipe. Cigarettes are made from:

  • tobacco, selected according to specific blends and leaf grades to maintain the consistency and distinctive character of each brand

  • ingredients, added to many of our brands to keep the tobacco moist, aid the manufacturing process, replenish natural sugars lost during leaf curing, and contribute to each brand’s unique taste

  • nontobacco materials, such as cigarette paper and filters

 

How are cigarettes made?

We operate 48 production facilities in 32 different countries and produce over 800 billion cigarettes each year. Cigarettes are produced in factories around the world by processing the tobacco leaf, manufacturing the cigarettes, and preparing the final pack. Learn more below.

 

PROCESSING TOBACCO LEAF

Selecting the right blend of tobacco is the first step in cigarette production.

Our experts use their detailed knowledge to carefully select the blend of different tobacco types (such as Virginia, burley, and oriental) and leaf grades used in our cigarette brands. The tobaccos are selected to maintain the consistency and distinctive character of each brand.

In addition to tobacco, which is the main ingredient in all of our cigarettes, other ingredients are added to many of our brands. Some ingredients, such as humectants, help maintain the moisture and pliability of the tobacco leaf. Others contribute to the taste and aroma of the tobacco leaf smoke.

After the tobaccos are blended together, the tobacco blend is finely cut before it passes through a drying cylinder to reduce moisture. When the moisture is at an optimal level, the blend is ready for cigarette manufacturing.

first processing thumb
MANUFACTURING CIGARETTES

Cigarette manufacturing is a fast-paced, highly automated process.

Our machines can produce up to 20,000 cigarettes every minute.

The process begins by creating one long cigarette, called a ‘rod.’ To produce the rod, a spool of cigarette paper up 7,000 meters long is unrolled and a line of tobacco is placed on it. The cigarette paper is then wrapped around the tobacco, forming the rod.

Machines slice the super-sized rod into shorter pieces, inserting filters at both ends. The filters are then connected with ‘tipping paper’, the paper consumers see wrapped around the filter tip of a cigarette. Each shorter rod is then cut in half, producing two filtered cigarettes. The construction quality of each cigarette is checked at three different stages.

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PREPARING THE FINAL PACK

Individual cigarettes are sorted into pack-sized groups and wrapped in foil to preserve their freshness.

The pack itself is assembled around the cigarettes. The finished pack is then wrapped with protective film, which also serves to preserve the cigarettes’ aroma and freshness. The packs are placed in cartons or wrapped and placed into a master case for shipment.

Although the manufacturing of cigarettes is a highly automated process, it also requires careful supervision by our factory workers. Inspection of the leaf, blending, and quality assurance of the final product can never be left solely to machines.

Factory Packing

Does PMI add ingredients to cigarettes to make them more addictive?Know more

No. It's nicotine that makes cigarettes addictive. Nicotine exists naturally in tobacco, which is the main ingredient in our cigarettes.

  

 

Product Ingredient FINDER

We make a wide variety of international and local cigarette brands, and sell fine-cut tobacco, roll-your-own, make-your-own, cigars, cigarillos, and pipe tobacco.

We disclose the ingredients that go into each brand of our combustible tobacco products. Use our ingredient finder to find out what's in each one. Start by selecting the country where the product is sold.

classic-cig Side Seam Adhesives Monogam Inks Cigarette Papers Ingredients Added to the Tobacco Tipping Papers Filter Filters Wrap Filter Adhesives
Combustible Tobacco
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