Do cigarettes expire? What you need to know about cigarettes

Photo of author
Written By Soliu


Spread the love

Do cigarettes expire? Such is the question some smokers asked since cigarettes pack doesn’t have expiration date.

Even as a non-smoker who hasprobably seen an old cigarettes carton with one or two cigars left in the pack, you’ll also wonder if cigarettes really expire.

So if you are here to know if cigarettes expire and how long does it take before it looks really bad, what will happen if you smoke an expired cigarette, etc.

This publication will answer all of the questions poised above. In fact, you’ll be exposed to the simplest method to decipher the production codes.

At least, if you can find out when your cigarettes were manufactured, you’ll be able to tell when you should probably not smoke it.

Do cigarettes pack have an expiration date?

The answer is no. Cigarettes pack doesn’t contain an expiration date on it body. There’s a logic behind this, though.

Cigarettes pack doesn’t have expired date printed on it because the World Health Organization recommends tobacco Companies not to do so.

In its reasoning, WHO believes that printing an expiration date on cigarettes will lead consumers to think that it’s “safe” to smoke the product before it expires.

When in actual sense, smoking cigarettes has an inevitable risk that can not be prevented when smoke within the “best before” period.

Related:  DS-160: All You Need To Know

However, it’s important to state that the fact that cigarettes don’t have an expiration date printed on their pack doesn’t mean they won’t go bad.

As a matter of fact, consuming expired cigarettes is not in anyway worse than smoking new ones.

The time and oxygen exposure can only impact (negatively) the flavor and freshness of the cigarettes. The harm and risks are the same.

Do cigarettes expire and what happens when it goes bad?

At this juncture, it’s pertinent to state that cigarette don’t expires so much as it become extremely stale.

When cigarettes pack is unsealed thereby exposing the tobaccos to air, the moisture in its contents will escape from the oils and resins used during manufacturing.

When cigarettes lose their moisture and become stale, the tobacco contents taste very different to the new ones.

This sis because stale cigarettes often taste very unpleasant, and if it’s menthol cigarettes, it even taste worse.



Once the cigarettes are opened and exposed to air, the commercial ones will last about two days before becoming stale.

Plus, fluctuations in humidity may also change the cigarettes wrapper burn pattern, making them burn, even, faster.

How to know if cigarettes are stale.

To know if a cigarette is stale, there are a few different ways to tell. The easiest way is to smoke one to look out for any difficulty with airflow or unpleasant smell.

On the other hand, if you don’t want to risk consuming a stale cigarette, you can look out for the visual signs of staleness.

To do this, Roll one of the cigarette between your fingers and check if any tobacco content pours out of the end. That’s another sign of staleness.

Related:  11 Top Holiday Package Company in Nigeria

Smell is another indicator of stale cigarettes. Place one of the cigarettes under your nose and inhale for flavor identification.

Fresh cigarettes usually smell as though it’s a sweet raisin and you could smell other characterizing flavors like menthol.

Methanol cigarettes smell like mint. So if the smell is papery, plain, or dull, then your cigarettes are likely expired.

How to know the age of a pack of cigarettes

As we have rightly stated earlier that the tobacco industry doesn’t print an expiration date on their products based on the recommendation of WHO.

Hence, it’s quite difficult to know when the cigarettes you are buying was manufactured.

You might have bought a pack of cigarettes that has been sitting on the shelf for years unknowingly.

And by the time you opened it, that is when you realized that they are staled. As such, there are ways to avoid this.

To make sure you are buying the freshest cigarettes packs possible, there are few techniques to know that.

The tobacco industry makes use of a variety of internal codes in the course of labelling their cigarettes.



To an ordinary person, these codes may look like a random number and letters with little or no significance meaning.

But the reality is that these printed codes on the labels can tell you when the cigarettes were actually made.

They will tell you the kind of additives they have, and the type of tobaccos the company blended to make the pack, etc.

As matter of fact, these codes can tell you when the cigarettes were produced, packaged, and lots more.

Related:  Nigeria ZIP Codes: All Nigeria postal Codes including Lagos Postal Codes

What all these means is that you can find out the age of the cigarettes by checking the production code.

Most of the top tobacco companies use what is known as the Julian Date Code with a six or seven-digit number.

The first three numbers depict the day of the year the cigarettes were actually manufactured.

For example, if the first three numbers of the codes read 144, it means that the pack was manufactured on the 24th of May i.e. 144th day of the year.

The next two number represent the year it was produced. So if the next two digits read 20, then the cigarettes were manufactured in 2020.

Note that there may be more digits after the first five, they are usually refer to the shift the cigarettes were made on, and doesn’t affect the cigarettes age.

Bottom line

Smokers consume cigarettes for a bunch of reasons, but whatever what the reasons are, they are not worth it.

And for whatever reason you choose to keep smoking cigarettes, you might want it to be fresh and pleasant.

Cigarettes don’t expire like other traditional and beneficial foods that we consume, they do go stale.

The above explantation on how to tell if cigarettes have gone bad and how to know the production date will help you greatly.

Remember, there’s no difference from taking fresh and stale news in terms of it health hazards, shun smoking as soon as possible.

Spread the love

Leave a Comment