Despite having the same outward appearance as well-known tobacco brands, counterfeit tobacco is manufactured illegally and often contains unlicensed substances, affecting its taste, texture, smell and safety. Not only does counterfeit tobacco threaten the brand image of larger, licensed tobacco manufacturers, it can also pose serious health risks to consumers. In fact, according to leading tobacco company JTI, counterfeit tobacco products were found to contain weedkillers, metal splinters, dead insects and rat faeces, causing serious harm to consumers.
While sales of genuine tobacco may be declining, counterfeit tobacco is still infiltrating the market at record numbers. In January 2023, Europol seized more than 100 tonnes of illegal products including 55 tonnes of cigarettes in boxes (19.4 million cigarettes and 15 tonnes of cut tobacco). While the factory was housed in France, counterfeit tobacco is often smuggled across borders and infiltrated into global markets.
To help tackle the rise in counterfeit tobacco, we have created the world’s first quantum anti-counterfeit solution for tobacco.