China. The ever-changing, reforming, renovating, restructuring tobacco industry of China is hard to keep tabs on. The transformation has seen the number of factories going from over 200 of varying sizes in the later 20th century to a relative handful of large factories consolidated under a few group companies today. And which companies are the real players? What brands lead the market? How much money and product is involved? Well we have all those answers in the Tobacco Asia Profile by Tobaccochina Online (page 46) focusing on China’s STMA and CNTC and its group companies. Also, Tobaccochina Online reports on another segment of the China market is putting on some weight as China’s slim cigarette segment fattens up. (Story on page 24).
Japan. The tobacco consumer in Japan is always eager to try new things. Why aren’t they into e-cigarettes or PREPS (potentially reduced risk products) in a big way? Correspondent Thomas Schmid answers that question but much more on Japan’s cigarette market, consumption, market shares, products, and factors weighing in on an expected gradual downturn in consumption.
Korea. In our regular e-cigarette report correspondent Nattira Medvedeva focuses on Korea, one of Asia’s more interesting and promising markets for these new products, both in consumption and product marketing. (Story on page 38.)
Nicaragua. Once a third-tier player in the cigar and cigar leaf business, cigar correspondent Eric Piras reckons that with a long-time calm in the political environment, investments from leading global cigar companies, and vast improvements in quality, Nicaragua may become the cigar terroir of the 21st century. (Story on page 58.)
Track and Trace. Combating illicit tobacco trade is an issue that is being seriously addressed by not only those in the tobacco industry but also governments around the world and international bodies. Nattira Medvedeva fills us in on what to expect with the EU’s revised tobacco products directive. (Story on page 18.)
New Departments. In this issue we introduce two new regular departments. First is Patents (page 67), which is where many can find out the newest ideas and directions that technology and the industry is going. And we also introduce the Subscriber’s Profile (page 72) where we introduce you to a typical reader of Tobacco Asia magazine
Vape. It’s official that vape (“vape, verb: Inhale and exhale the vapour produced by an electronic cigarette or similar device”) has been added to the Oxford dictionary (which is why we kept the “u” in the word “vapor”) and was also named by them as “Word of the Year”. With the fast growing vaping and e-cigarettes, runner-up words bae, budtender, contactless, indyref, normcore, and slackivism didn’t stand a chance..