22nd Century Group Announces South Korea as First International VLN® Market

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BUFFALO, NY, Feb. 28 Aug. 20, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — 22nd Century Group, Inc. (Nasdaq: XXII), a leading agricultural biotechnology company focused on tobacco harm reduction, tobacco nicotine reduction and health improvement and wellness through modern plant science, today announced that South Korea’s $1.6 billion1 tobacco market will be the first international market to begin selling its cigarettes to reduced nicotine content VLN®.

“South Korea is an ideal international launch market in many ways, with a high smoking rate among developed countries and a government strongly committed to tobacco harm reduction. We expect the first sale of reduced nicotine VLN® cigarettes to our South Korean partner to occur by the end of March,” said James A. Mish, President and CEO.

“About one in three adult men in South Korea2 are smokers and about 6% of adult women smoke. The government has worked over the past two decades to promote smoking cessation through various means, including raising tobacco prices, and remains committed to advancing alternative products to help curb smoking activity in the country. . We are excited to make reduced nicotine VLN® products available in South Korea to help break the cycle of nicotine addiction and support this important effort.

The Company will continue its process of launching in additional markets in Asia and Europe with limited regulatory barriers while leveraging VLN®’s MRTP clearance to gain approval in additional markets with higher regulatory barriers. In addition to its first international launch of reduced-nicotine VLN® cigarettes in the $800 billion+ global tobacco market, 22nd Century Group is actively moving forward to launch VLN® in the $80 billion US tobacco market. . The US FDA cleared 22nd Century’s VLN® reduced nicotine cigarette products on December 23, 2021. The company is currently executing its 90-day post-clearance plan to launch in its first US pilot market.

In its MRTP clearance press release for 22nd Century VLN® King and VLN® Menthol King cigarettes, the FDA stated, “We know that three out of four adult smokers want to quit, and data on these products show that they can help addicted adult smokers make the transition. away from highly addictive burnt cigarettes.

About VLN®VLN® is the first and only combustible cigarette approved by the FDA MRTP. Using 22nd Century’s proprietary tobacco plant lines, VLN® cigarettes smoke, smell and taste like a conventional cigarette, but contain 95% less nicotine. Numerous independent scientific studies, largely funded by the United States Food and Drug Administration, the National Institutes of Health and other United States federal government agencies, have demonstrated that the use of reduced nicotine tobacco cigarettes as VLN® helps smokers reduce their nicotine exposure and dependence, smoke fewer cigarettes per day, increase their number of days without smoking and double their attempts to quit – all with little or no withdrawal symptoms nicotine or compensatory smoking behavior. VLN® helps you smoke less. Learn more at tryVLN.com.

About 22nd Century Group, Inc.22nd Century Group, Inc. (Nasdaq: XXII) is a leading agricultural biotechnology company focused on reducing tobacco harm, reducing tobacco nicotine, and improving health and well-being through phytology. With dozens of patents enabling it to control the biosynthesis of nicotine in the tobacco plant, the company has developed proprietary reduced nicotine (RNC) tobacco plants and cigarettes, which have become the cornerstone of the overall plan. of the FDA to combat widespread deaths and illnesses caused by smoking. The company received the first and only MRTP clearance from the FDA for a combustible cigarette in December 2021. In tobacco, hemp/cannabis and hops plants, 22nd Century uses modern plant breeding technologies including genetic engineering , gene editing and molecular breeding to provide solutions for the life science and consumer product industries by creating new proprietary plants with optimized alkaloid and flavonoid profiles along with improved yields and valuable agronomic characteristics.

Learn more at xxiicentury.com, on Twitter @_xxiicentury and on LinkedIn.

Caution Regarding Forward-Looking StatementsExcept for historical information, all statements, expectations and assumptions in this press release are forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements generally contain words such as “anticipate”, “believe”, “consider”, “continue”, “could”, “estimate”, “expect”, “explore”, “expect”, “target ‘, ‘advice’, ‘intend’, ‘likely’, ‘may’, ‘plan’, ‘potential’, ‘predict’, ‘preliminary’, ‘probable’, ‘project’, ‘promising’, “seek”, “should”, “steal”, “would” and similar expressions. Actual results may differ materially from those expressed or implied in the forward-looking statements. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially are discussed in the “Risk Factors” section of the Company’s Annual Report on Form 10-K filed March 11, 2021. All information provided in this release is valid. as of the date hereof, and The Company undertakes no obligation and does not intend to update these forward-looking statements, except as required by law.

Investor Relations and Media Contact:Mei Kuo22nd Century Group, Inc.Director, Communications & Investor RelationsT: [email protected]

Darrow Associates Investor RelationsMatt KrepsT: [email protected]

1 https://www.statista.com/outlook/cmo/tobacco-products/south-korea 2 https://www.statista.com/statistics/645282/south-korea-smoking-rate-by-gender/# :~:text=In%202019%2C%20about%2034.7%20%,has declined%20steadily%20in%20recent%20years.

A photo accompanying this announcement is available at https://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/5875eade-e524-411f-930e-283f7a995009

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