How many cigarette roll-ups/tubes per 50g pouch?

Border Force come up with figures that are complete pants and based on no scientific analysis whatsoever. However, the BS-ISO-15592-part 3 does have factual stats. If you want to read the whole thing it's here 

We'll concentrate on the minimum amount of cigarettes you can get from a 50g pouch as the maximum is of little interest to us. BS-ISO-15592-part 3 tested all the cigarettes on the market and came up with the figure of 750mg per cigarette per 70mm paper, 7.2mm diameter with 18mm filter. This equates to 66.66 cigarettes per 50g pouch.

It doesn't end there though. We in the UK use the 70mm paper (single wide) but in the rest of the EU they use 79mm paper (known as 'Spanish' or 1 1/4"). So this equates to approx 59 cigarettes per 50g pouch  (1000 mg of tobacco per cigarette).

This is further confused by the varying widths of paper for larger dia than 7.2mm cigarettes and RAW have a good video on this here:-

Reference to the British Standard International Organisation of Standardization statistics in BS ISO  15592 – Part 3 : an internationally recognised standard which specifies that:-

i)                    A 70 mm cigarette paper, with a 7.2 mm diameter consumes 750 mg (0.75g) of tobacco.

ii)                   A 79 mm cigarette paper (termed Spanish), with a 7.2mm diameter consumes 879.8 mg (0.88g) of tobacco.

iii)                 A 100 mm paper (termed King Size), with a 7.2 mm diameter consumes 118.3 mg (1.18g) of tobacco.
(Note:- all using 18mm filter)

iv)                 Thus a 50g (50,000 mg) pouch of tobacco will be sufficient for the production of 42.4 to 66.7  cigarettes depending on the size of cigarette paper used (assuming under scientific conditions i.e no waste, stalks, humidity or variation in production size). Production would be expected to vary in the region of 10% when production is not under scientific conditions. (Note:- the above figures are only relevant to the 3 sizes of cigarette papers specified. There are other cigarette papers available such as 1 ¼”, 2 ½”, Double-wide and King Size and specialised cigarette papers. King Size should not to be confused with Kingsize).

NOTE:- Border Force do NOT issue guidelines to their officers re the number of cigarettes from a 50g pouch! See here

BS ISO = British Standard   International Organisation of Standardization


  1. All I know is that when rolling SWMBO's cigs, using RIZLA+, I get 60 per 50g pouch of Amberleaf.

    1. Sorry, should have stressed that was King Size tubes.

  2. lt matters not whether individuals get more or less than the figures in BS ISO 15592 Pt 3. What matters is that there is internationally accepted stats for how many cigarettes you get from a 50g pouch.

    Border Force cannot argue about this and it's no surprise to anyone that Border Force know this BS ISO 15592 Pt3 anyway. As in virtually everything else we've found out ... they ignore it when stopping passengers and put forward their own figures which bear no resemblance to BS ISO 15592 Pt 3.

  3. Well I have never counted, I make cigs with tubes till the baccy runs out and then open another pouch and go through about 3 pouches a week on average. Same with tubes, use one box, it gets empty, open another box. That I now know roughly how many I smoke would worry me but I gave up caring a long time ago, I smoke however many I feel like and it varies from day to day, however it is useful information, never been queried on it before, no doubt they will start to in the future though.

    1. l also don't know. One pouch goes over to the next day and then at some point open up another. Same for tubes but it's days before l open another.

    2. I can understand that - remember I'm a non smoker who would be happy if SWMBO packed up as well. Doubt it'll ever happen (sad)

      As she often tells me, I spent 3 weeks in ITU ( Feb 1988) so gave up the easy way (wink)

      I did notice that RIZLA+ are slightly larger diameter than tubes from Morrisons and number dropped from 62 to 60.

  4. This is something which has always alarmed me, not just because UKBF have wrong information, but also because ridiculous anti roll-up messages like 'GULP' from Smokefree Southwest base their information on the same calculations.
    It is all based on the size of a king size (which is now standard) cigarette, of the standard thickness. Now we all know that most people use a smaller length (what was one the standard) papers. If they use filters, most use ultra slim. If they do not use filters, they may roll them even thinner. I use ultra slim filters, and I get 120 cigarettes from a 50g pouch.

  5. ...may I also add this. The 'guidelines' are based on the fact that a cigarette smoker gets through 20 cigarettes a day. Now the civil servant who dreamt up the guidelines allows a person to have two holidays a year. So, based on the 'scientific' calculations of how many cigs come from a pouch, combined with the 20 a day hypothesis, that means that 1kg will last for 6 months.

  6. Corrrection. About 60 using regular Zig Zag papers and GV.

  7. What about if someone uses a lighter on board? I am just off a Lufthansa flight from Washington DC to Frankfurt in which a passenger used his lighter to search for something he'd lost on his seat. He was an elderly man, but that is neither here nor there. Anyway, the stewards did not take the lighter off the man. They just told him to use the light provided instead of his lighter.

  8. I smoke however many I feel like here and it varies from day to day, however it is useful information, never been queried on it before,

  9. Oops. sorry, not pouches, bricks! He claimed to smoke two to three BRICKS per day .

  10. My comments are coming in backwards. I thought I had posted this one first, but did not.
    I don't care how many cigarettes someone gets out of a pouch or a brick, it's the fact that someone claimed to smoke two or three BRICKS per day to justify bringing in (and not declaring) 57 bricks of tobacco. Also, who goes several hours without asking for a smoke break? Flight of several hours, a few hours arguing at Customs. LOL.


"In the eyes of the Tribunal the review letter contained several preconceptions, prejudgments and non-sequiturs"

"the absurdity of this reason is demonstrated by simply stating it"

"We therefore find that Mr Sked misdirected himself as to the Policy in carrying out the review and his decision is therefore one that no reasonable review officer could have arrived at."

... commonly known here at N2D as 'Skeds' ... that is to say these are Judges comments regarding UKBA Review Officer Ian Sked's reasons for rejecting peoples appeals against seizures.

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