Independent research from Germany, Switzerland, Japan, Denmark, England, Canada, and the Netherlands, provides insight on youth uptake of these products.

In any given year, nine out of 10 smokers will continue smoking. These adults deserve scientifically substantiated better alternatives, which now exist thanks to developments in science and technology. However, the commercialization of smoke-free products must be done responsibly and should guard against access by unintended audiences, including minors.


We are clear: Youth should not use any tobacco or nicotine products. This is something we take very seriously at PMI.

You can read more about our high marketing standards further down the page.

Independent studies on youth initiation of heated tobacco products 

Except if required by the relevant regulation, we don’t conduct research involving participants under the legal age for tobacco use, so we rely on the data and conclusions reported by government agencies and the global scientific community to understand whether youth are using heated tobacco products. 

Hover over the countries to see the findings:

Setting our own high marketing standards

Tobacco marketing is subject to extensive restrictions—including outright bans—throughout the world. But in countries where tobacco regulation is more lenient, and would allow more freedom in terms of marketing, our affiliates must follow our robust Marketing Codes

PMI’s marketing practices must adhere to four core principles, without exception and regardless of the country or the type of product, as stated in our Code of Conduct

  • We only market and sell our products to adult smokers. 
  • We warn consumers about the health effects of our products. 
  • Our marketing is honest, transparent, and accurate. 
  • We respect the law and our high standards. 

In addition to these four core principles, our Marketing Codes (including the accompanying Good Conversion Practices) govern the marketing and sale of our smoke-free products. Our goal is to convert adults who would otherwise continue smoking to scientifically substantiated smoke-free products. 

Preventing youth initiation

We support regulation aimed at preventing youth use of tobacco or other nicotine-containing products, and strict enforcement of minimum-age laws. 

Whilst these case studies show that youth uptake of heated tobacco products is low, no minors should be using any product containing tobacco and/or nicotine, and continued efforts to prevent youth access are critical.  

We are committed to guarding against youth initiation and youth use of nicotine-containing products. All our markets are tasked to further enforce and modernize youth access prevention programs. In 2023, 98 percent of our total shipment volume was covered by youth access prevention programs in our indirect retail channels. 

As part of the modified risk tobacco product (MRTP) orders granted by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in its authorization of our heated tobacco product in July 2020, we are required to monitor and report who is using the product in the U.S., including whether it is used by youth and young adults.  

A comprehensive overview of our post-market obligations can be found in the FDA’s Technical Project Lead, an 80-page scientific analysis of our modified risk tobacco product application.

Achieving a smoke-free future

PMI has transformed to deliver better alternatives to those adult smokers who would otherwise continue to smoke. These products should never be used by youth or adult non-smokers. 

With robust global measures to prevent unintended use of smoke-free alternatives—together with a united approach and broad strategic input—we can realize the seismic public health opportunity of a smoke-free future. 

Read more about the low prevalence of heated tobacco product use by youth on