Next Generation Products (NGPs) seek to offer adult smokers an alternative to traditional tobacco products. NGPs can broadly be split into two different types: those containing tobacco leaf, and those that do not. There are many different designs and formats of NGPs within these categories, with new products routinely being developed for adult consumers. It's important that governments appropriately regulate these products, and that manufacturers ensure high standards of product safety and quality.


We are increasingly focusing our attention on developing and expanding our NGP portfolio, and want to reduce the health impact of tobacco by encouraging smokers to switch to products with lower health risks. Our report charts the progress we're making in transitioning consumers from tobacco to something better.

Bristol Portraits Imperial Tobacco

"We continue to invest in our research and development of Next Generation Products as they offer adult smokers a genuine choice."

Joe Thompson, Group Product Science Director



EVPs are fundamentally different from all tobacco-based products and devices; they do not contain tobacco leaf. A number of public health bodies recognize the potential of EVPs as safer alternatives to smoking. For example, in the UK, Public Health England and the Royal College of Physicians have concluded that EVPs are substantially safer than smoking.

In the EVP category, there are four main formats: 

Closed systems

With a prefilled cartridge of e liquid.

Open systems

Where the vaper fills the device with an e liquid.

Open customisable systems

 Which allow different components to be selected by the vaper (such as Advanced Personal Vaporizers or ‘MODs’).

Pod Systems

A recent innovation which combines closed system usability with the increased power of open systems. 

Key elements of each are the use of an e liquid, a battery, an atomiser and a mouth piece. Some examples of these different formats of EVPs are shown below.

Through our subsidiary Fontem Ventures we are committed to making a significant contribution to the growing body of research around vaping products. This includes assessing their safety and demonstrating their potential to reduce the risk of diseases associated with smoking when adult smokers switch to our EVPs.  Our science experts cover a broad range of disciplines, including toxicology, molecular biology and pharmacology.

For more relating to our views on the science and research relating to EVPs, please click here.



Heated tobacco products were first marketed in the 1980s, but recent advances in electronic technology have resulted in a new generation of products being launched in different markets.

Heated tobacco products generally use a heating element to heat a portion or rod of tobacco, releasing nicotine and other tobacco emissions at substantially lower levels than traditional cigarettes.

As with EVPs, there are different formats of heating devices including:

“Oven” types

Where the heat source surrounds the tobacco rod.

“Blade” types

Where a heating element is inserted into the tobacco rod.

Carbon fuel heating tip

Which is lit in place of the tobacco.

Other developments are likely within the category, as adult smoker preferences develop.

We believe that comprehensive, peer-reviewed independent scientific research should be conducted to review all new next generation products. Currently, no regulatory body has concluded that tobacco-based NGPs offer a reduced-risk alternative for adult smokers.