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Adult smokers prefer many different tastes and strengths of cigarettes.

We strive to understand the preferences of adult consumers and to design cigarettes to satisfy them. It’s the preferences of adult consumers that guide our blends – the mix of tobaccos used – and we work to ensure that these grades are available long-term to keep the tastes of the products consistent.

Blended versus unblended cigarettes

Smokers in countries such as Canada, Australia and the UK have historically preferred the taste of Virginia-style cigarettes, which contain few or no ingredients.

In the US and Germany, for example, smokers prefer cigarettes that blend different types of tobaccos such as burley and oriental, which generally need the addition of ingredients. Such brands are known as American-style blends.

Cigarette design

Cigarette design is more complicated than it may seem. Cigarettes have four basic components:

  • The tobacco rod
  • The cigarette paper around the tobacco rod
  • The filtration zone
  • The filter and tipping around the filtration zone.

The tobacco in the rod includes tobacco lamina (the flat part of the tobacco leaf), tobacco stem (midribs of the leaf), and expanded lamina.

The cigarette paper includes paper and adhesive.

The filter is made mainly from cellulose acetate fibres, known as tow. Cellulose acetate is derived from wood pulp. The filter is wrapped in paper and sealed with a line of adhesive. Sometimes charcoal is added to filters.

The design of the filter can be varied, for example by making perforations, by changing its length or its density (by using more fibres), by the fineness of the fibres and by the type of material used. All these filter variations can affect the amount of filtration, and hence the taste.

The tipping paper includes paper and adhesive.

In manufacturing, each brand has a specific tobacco recipe, a designated paper, filter, level of filter ventilation, tipping and graphic printing. Design adjustments achieve different strengths and tastes, and can reduce smoke yields of various smoke components.