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22nd Century Announces New Greenbutts Manufacturing Agreement for Innovative Plant-Based, Biodegradable Cigarette Filters

10 July 2024
  • Patented, Fully Water Dispersing, Biodegradable Solution for World's Most Littered Item

Mocksville, North Carolina--(Newsfile Corp. - July 10, 2024) - 22nd Century Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: XXII), a tobacco products company focused on nicotine harm reduction and contract manufacturing, today announced an agreement with Greenbutts, LLC to provide manufacturing space at its Mocksville, North Carolina NASCO manufacturing facility and NASCO staff to operate the manufacturing equipment for an innovative new cigarette filter solution. Greenbutts offers a patented technology to replace single-use, plastic-based filters currently used in tobacco products with water soluble, fully biodegradable filter solutions.

Said Larry Firestone, Chairman and CEO: "With an estimated 6 trillion manufactured every year, plastic-based cigarette butts are the most abundant form of plastic waste worldwide. Adding to that, an estimated 65% are littered, making them the world's single most littered item. Unfortunately, the cellulose acetate plastics used in conventional cigarette butts takes decades to biodegrade, resulting in toxic waste that is harmful to ecosystems and wildlife, especially aquatic ecosystems. Greenbutts provides a simple, non-toxic, 100% biodegradable, plant-based and water dispersing solution that is free of plastic and harmful chemicals while providing the same smoking experience as current filters.

"Under this new multi-year agreement, 22nd Century Group will provide the manufacturing space and support needed to produce sample product to allow Greenbutts to pursue FDA approval, with the mutual goal thereafter of expanding to full commercial production. We see this as an exciting new innovation and disruptor that could be used in both our VLN® reduced nicotine content cigarettes, the first and only combustible cigarette to receive an FDA harm reduction authorization, and in our CMO business for other conventional cigarette brands as well, where advanced discussions about potential use in cigarette products are already underway."

About 22nd Century Group, Inc.
22nd Century Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: XXII) is an agricultural biotechnology company focused on tobacco harm reduction, reduced nicotine tobacco and improving health and wellness through plant science. With dozens of patents allowing it to control nicotine biosynthesis in the tobacco plant, the Company has developed proprietary reduced nicotine content (RNC) tobacco plants and cigarettes, which have become the cornerstone of the FDA's Comprehensive Plan to address the widespread death and disease caused by smoking. The Company received the first and only FDA Modified Risk Tobacco Product (MRTP) authorization for a combustible cigarette in December 2021. The Company is a subsequent participating manufacturer under the Master Settlement Agreement ("MSA") and vertically integrated for the production of its both own products and contract manufacturing operations ("CMO"), which consist primarily of branded filtered cigars and conventional cigarettes.

About Greenbutts™️
Since 2010, Greenbutts has worked with leading R&D institutions, multinational tobacco companies, and industry experts to develop a natural filter technology, capable of replacing the most littered plastic item in the world- cellulose acetate cigarette filters. Driven by recent single-use-plastic (SUP) legislation enforced by governments, the Company is actively engaged in the global commercialization of its proprietary, plastic-free and trademarked material technology, Greenbutts™, fulfilling the global industry demand for biodegradable filters. Greenbutts filters are certified to disperse in water within minutes and degrade in compost within days, as opposed to 10-15 years as is the case with traditional cellulose acetate filters.

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Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
Except for historical information, all of the statements, expectations, and assumptions contained in this press release are forward-looking statements, including but not limited to our full year business outlook. Forward-Looking statements typically contain terms such as "anticipate," "believe," "consider," "continue," "could," "estimate," "expect," "explore," "foresee," "goal," "guidance," "intend," "likely," "may," "plan," "potential," "predict," "preliminary," "probable," "project," "promising," "seek," "should," "will," "would," and similar expressions. Forward-Looking statements include, but are not limited to, statements regarding (i) our strategic alternatives and cost reduction initiatives, (ii) our expectations regarding regulatory enforcement, including our ability to receive an exemption from new regulations, (iii) our financial and operating performance and (iv) our expectations for our business interruption insurance claim. Actual results might differ materially from those explicit or implicit in forward-looking statements. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially are set forth in "Risk Factors" in the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K filed on March 28, 2024 and Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q filed on May 15, 2024. All information provided in this release is as of the date hereof, and the Company assumes no obligation to and does not intend to update these forward-looking statements, except as required by law.

Investor Relations & Media Contact
Matt Kreps
Investor Relations
22nd Century Group
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