Exploring the better alternatives to smoking aimed at helping ALL adult smokers leave cigarettes behind for good3 min read
PMI has spent more than a decade developing innovative better alternatives to smoking to help move every adult smoker away from cigarettes.
Our vision is of a smoke-free future—and, to date, we’ve invested USD 10.5 billion in this ambition. But we know that to consign cigarettes to the past, we need every adult who would otherwise continue to smoke to leave behind cigarettes for good.
To achieve this, offering this vast and diverse group a range of smoke-free alternatives across different product categories is vital, because no single solution will meet the preferences of every adult who smokes cigarettes—or cater to every price point.
That why’s our growing smoke-free portfolio includes a variety of heated tobacco, e-vapor, and oral smokeless products, all of which are backed by robust science to demonstrate their benefits for adults compared with continued smoking. These products are not risk-free and provide nicotine which is addictive. But, as they are all smoke-free, they represent a better choice for adults than continuing to smoke.
So, how do the smoke-free product categories differ?
Heated tobacco products
PMI’s heated tobacco products—also known as heat-not-burn products—are electronic smoke-free devices that eliminate combustion by heating tobacco instead of burning it.
Using an innovative system, our range of devices release a flavored nicotine-containing vapor that, when inhaled, contains significantly lower levels of harmful chemicals compared to cigarettes.
Heated tobacco products don’t create fire, ash, or smoke, but still deliver nicotine, which is naturally present in tobacco.
Nicotine is one of the characteristics—along with taste and ritual—adult smokers look for in alternative products. It is addictive and not risk-free, but it is not the primary cause of smoking-related diseases.
The primary cause is burning tobacco. This creates smoke, which exposes cigarette users to over 6,000 chemicals—of which about 100 have been identified as causes or potential causes of smoking-related diseases, such as lung cancer, cardiovascular disease, and emphysema.
Heated tobacco products are fundamentally different from cigarettes because there is no smoke or secondhand smoke.
Our science shows they are not risk-free but represent a far better choice for adult smokers than continuing to smoke cigarettes.
Unlike heated tobacco products, e-vapor products—otherwise known as vapes or e-cigarettes—don’t use tobacco.
Our e-vapor products are filled with an e-liquid containing nicotine and flavors. The battery-powered devices heat the liquid to generate an e-vapor, which the user inhales.
Like our heated tobacco products, they don’t generate smoke or secondhand smoke, and our range of e-vapor products emit significantly lower levels of harmful chemicals compared to cigarettes.
In September 2022, a major independent review of 400 published studies found that vaping is substantially less harmful than smoking, and smokers who switched would experience a substantial reduction in the toxic substances that cause cancer, lung disease, and cardiovascular disease.
This supports our own robust science, of which key elements have been corroborated in other independent studies on better alternatives to smoking by the scientific community.
Oral smokeless products
Oral smokeless products include nicotine pouches and snus.
Nicotine pouches are made primarily of nicotine and flavors, while snus contains smokeless tobacco. Both are wrapped in a cellulose pouch, which is placed between the gum and the cheek or upper lip.
The nicotine is then absorbed through the oral mucosa. These products are not risk-free and provide nicotine, which is addictive.
Both products are inherently smoke-free and are a natural addition to our portfolio of smoke-free nicotine products, further enabling us to provide a variety of better alternatives suited to every adult smoker.
While the best choice for any smoker is to quit tobacco and nicotine use altogether, we will continue to develop better alternatives to smoking that will make it easier for adult smokers to abandon cigarettes—if they don’t quit cigarettes and nicotine completely.
It is only by doing this that we can achieve a significant milestone in public health—a smoke-free future.