You may have noticed the sudden increase in the use of synthetic and tobacco-free nicotine (TFN) in recent months. These two types of nicotine may play a critical part in developing a booming and autonomous vaping sector, depending on how the PMTA process plays out.
Synthetic nicotine could be a lifeline for tiny vape juice firms, allowing adults to continue to enjoy their favorite nicotine flavours.
The question of how the FDA’s Center for Tobacco Products will handle synthetic nicotine is the elephant in the room.
Today, we’ll reveal the five most important things to know about synthetic nicotine:
What is synthetic nicotine?
Synthetic nicotine, popularly known as “non-tobacco nicotine” or “tobacco-free nicotine,” is a synthetic version of nicotine found in most e-liquids, gum, patches, and tobacco. Scientists have discovered a way to make nicotine molecules without using tobacco,
“effectively liberating synthetic nicotine-based e-liquids from TPD regulations.
Synthetic Nicotine is rarely bought as a standalone commodity; instead, it is typically found inside tobacco products such as vapes and some cessation therapies (nicotine gum and patches).
You can get high-quality tfn nicotine for sale at various online and offline shops, and unlike its predecessor, it has not been restricted by the FDA.
Let us see what differentiates these two and why one is more strictly regulated.
Differences between the Synthetic and Tobacco-Derived nicotine
S-nicotine accounts for more than 99 percent of the nicotine in tobacco leaves. Tobacco-derived S-nicotine is chemically indistinguishable from pure synthetic S-nicotine.
There is not much difference between synthetic nicotine (SN) and tobacco-derived nicotine (TDN) in terms of its effect on the body because it was designed to mimic the chemical structure of nicotine. The difference is primarily in the manufacturing process.
Synthetic nicotine does not use tobacco as a source of nicotine, which results in nicotine that is free of the contaminants present in the more “naturally” derived nicotine.
Pharmaceutical nicotine is derived from tobacco; thus, the final product may have unusual impurities introduced during extraction, resulting in a sticky vape.
Synthetically produced nicotine has a comparable molecular structure to nicotine; however, it lacks the contaminants associated with tobacco.
How Long Does Synthetic Nicotine Stay in Your System?
Nicotine is transported to your liver and broken down into cotinine when it reaches your bloodstream.
Cotinine and nicotine are finally processed by the kidneys and excreted in the urine. The length of time these molecules remain in your urine is mainly determined by the route of administration of the nicotine and how frequently you use nicotine products, and other factors like your age, body weight, type, frequency of usage, water intake, and physical activity.
Your body can only process a specific quantity of nicotine at any time. As a result, the more nicotine you accumulate in your body, the longer it will take to digest and expel it. Heavy users who use tobacco products daily can keep nicotine in their bodies for up to a year after quitting.
If you are an infrequent user, nicotine can stay in your urine for up to four days. Even if you stop using it altogether, this can last up to three weeks if you use it consistently. Because your body can only digest so much nicotine and cotinine at a time, a build-up will take a longer time to process.
Nicotine can persist in your bloodstream for up to three days, and its metabolite, cotinine, can stay in your bloodstream for up to ten days after your last use.
Any substance identified in your circulation will eventually be deposited onto your hair follicle. This means that hair follicle testing can discover nicotine traces months after you’ve stopped vaping.
However, because hair follicle testing is much more expensive than urine or blood tests, many insurance companies do not use it.
What are the rules for non-tobacco products? Do any laws govern synthetic nicotine?
These products raise some questions about whether they should be regulated as tobacco products or drugs.
The FDA regulates all nicotine products, but various schemes apply based on the type of nicotine. However, the FDA has yet to decide how synthetic nicotine products will be regulated.
Companies that manufacture vaping products with tobacco-free nicotine, like e-liquids, tout their superior taste; however, these companies are only allowed to use SN because of the Tobacco Control Act.
Synthetic Nicotine is technically exempt because it is not derived from tobacco. The FDA will most likely regulate synthetic nicotine in some shape or form in the future.
In the meantime, states will have to decide how to regulate synthetic nicotine if it is not regulated at the federal level.
Actual Price of synthetic nicotine
The main thing preventing tobacco-free nicotine from sweeping the vaping industry is its high price. Currently, tobacco-free nicotine production necessitates far more production costs, R&D, expertise, raw materials, and logistics than tobacco extraction.
When the prices are compared, 1 litre of 100mg tobacco-derived nicotine is sufficient to produce an amount of vape juice that will cost around 100 US dollars. The exact quantity of e-liquid with synthetic nicotine will cost about $259.99.
This cost variation results in a $0.10/ml difference in price for 1L of 100mg of tobacco-derived nicotine and $0.26/ml for 1L of 100mg of tobacco-free nicotine. Even with the increased cost, the percentage increase remains within the market’s limits.
Non-tobacco Nicotine appears to be the way of the future, primarily for small to medium-sized nicotine production companies. Vaping companies may be granted FDA approval to produce disposable vapes containing synthetic nicotine.
As these products start getting legalized and hence more frequently used, it is vital to limit the amount of nicotine taken into the body, whether synthetic or plant-based, to reduce the risk of developing a nicotine addiction. But more importantly, one should limit the intake of synthetic nicotine since it is a field that is still undergoing a lot of research.