Cigarette brands from China

(Part one)
Mudan / Peony

Mudan Cigarette Pack

Mudan Cigarette Pack

China has the largest population consuming cigarettes in the world.

Interestingly, the most popular international cigarette brands like Marlboro only occupy a small market in China.

Chinese smokers prefer domestic brands, which are manufactured and sold by China Tobacco.

In the following articles, I’m introducing some characteristic Chinese cigarette brands (maybe not the most popular).

In Part One, let’s begin with Peony (Mudan) Cigarettes.
Close-up of Peony Cigarettes

Close-up of Peony Cigarettes

These cigarettes have been produced since the early 1970s at the Shanghai Cigarette Factory.

During the 1970s and 80s, cigarettes were produced in three versions – unfiltered, 76mm filtered, and 100mm filtered.

This brand is still produced today. But honestly, there’s no tobacco planting in Shanghai, and Peony cigarettes just taste so-so.

Why did I first introduce the Peony cigarette in this series?

Because of the design of its pack – a bright, colorful soft pack. The pack is spectacular, but rather modest by Chinese standards – a bright red background, the brand name in Chinese and on the back in Latin, in white with a “gold” edging, and a colorful image of a peony flower, a symbol of love and wealth in Chinese culture.

Design of Peony Cigarette Paper

Design of Peony Cigarette Paper

The close-up of a Peony cigarette paper.

It’s an export version, released in 80’s.

The cigarettes themselves are packaged in foil paper, intercepted by a paper label with the manufacturer’s designation.

Inner Aluminum Package of Cigarettes

Inner Aluminum Package of Cigarettes

The pack contains twenty filter cigarettes, 76 mm long.

The filter in cigarettes is regular, acetate, medium density.

There are no “burn control rings” on cigarette paper (Velin) and over time it has become extremely brittle, bursting at the slightest careless movement.

You can see this article to learn more about the rings on cigarettes:


The design of the cigarettes “in Chinese” is gorgeous – bright red hieroglyphs, translation of the brand into Latin, and a symbolic image of a peony flower in “gold”.

Moreover, it can be seen with the naked eye that the “golden” paint is very different from modern versions and looks as if it was applied manually with a pen.

All these details are presented in the white cigarette paper, which is manufactured by a handful of paper factories with special licenses in China.

Note: I’m not sure who produced cigarette paper in ’70-’80s, but nowadays qualified manufacturers are still rare:


In the end, let’s see the cigarette data and make a grade:
Flue-cured Tobacco10mg0.9mg12mg
Length of CigaretteLength of Filter TipPackageNumbers per Pack
84mm20mmSoft pack20pcs
Main Color of PackageSub Tint of PackageReference PriceSales Area
Mudan Cigarette Nowadays

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