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Pilot Launch of VLN Cigarettes in Progress
Research Report

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These "very low nicotine" tobacco products will be an alternative for smokers when the FDA effects its imminent menthol cigarette ban, noted a ROTH Capital Partners report.

22nd Century Group Inc. (XXII:NYSE.MKT), developer of very low nicotine (VLN)-containing tobacco and cigarette products, should benefit from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's (FDA's) recently released plan to ban menthol as a characterizing flavor in cigarettes and all flavors other than tobacco in cigars, reported ROTH Capital Partners analyst Brian Wright in an April 29 research note.

ROTH has a Buy rating and a $6 per share target price on 22nd Century Group. 




The FDA is pursuing this initiative to help address the adverse health effects smoking has specifically on disadvantaged populations and youths. Agency statistics show menthol cigarettes to be used most commonly by African American and young smokers.

Wright highlighted that the FDA's plan "couldn't come at a better time" for 22nd Century Group's VLN products. This is particularly true, he said, for the ag biotech's VLN King cigarettes. They should qualify as tobacco products exempt from the ban, ones that pose less risk to individual users or to population health than others, according to the FDA.

The regulatory body itself classified 22nd Century's VLN as a modified risk tobacco product when approving it in December 2021. At the time, the agency said such options, which contain less nicotine and are likely to reduce nicotine dependence, may help adult smokers and their health.

Advancement of the FDA's tobacco plan coincides with the 22nd Century's in-progress VLN pilot launch it kicked off in April. As the latter continues, the FDA will hold public comment sessions from May 4 through July 5 and listening sessions on June 13 and 15.

"We expect this period to include significant press coverage of the proposed rule, which should increase awareness and interest in the VLN King product that is a natural off ramp option," Wright commented.

After receiving, reviewing and considering all comments, the FDA will decide whether or not to issue final product standards.

The federal agency indicated it will enforce the proposed rules at the manufacturing, distributing, wholesaling, importing and retail levels, not at the individual consumer level, Wright relayed.

ROTH has a Buy rating and a $6 per share target price on 22nd Century Group. This compares to its current share price of around $2.

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1) Doresa Banning compiled this article for Streetwise Reports LLC and provides services to Streetwise Reports as an independent contractor. She or members of her household own securities of the following companies mentioned in the article: None. She or members of her household are paid by the following companies mentioned in this article: None.

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Important Disclaimers for ROTH Capital Partners, LLC, 22nd Century Group, Inc., April 29, 2022

ROTH Capital Partners, LLC expects to receive or intends to seek compensation for investment banking or other business relationships with the covered companies mentioned in this report in the next three months. The material, information and facts discussed in this report other than the information regarding ROTH Capital Partners, LLC and its affiliates, are from sources believed to be reliable, but are in no way guaranteed to be complete or accurate. This report should not be used as a complete analysis of the company, industry or security discussed in the report.

Additional information is available upon request. This is not, however, an offer or solicitation of the securities discussed. Any opinions or estimates in this report are subject to change without notice. An investment in the stock may involve risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from the forward-looking statements. Additionally, an investment in the stock may involve a high degree of risk and may not be suitable for all investors. No part of this report may be reproduced in any form without the express written permission of ROTH. 

ROTH makes a market in shares of 22nd Century Group, Inc. and as such, buys and sells from customers on a principal basis.

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