TREND: Big Tobacco, Lawmakers Changing Course as Non-Traditional Nicotine Surges

TREND: Big Tobacco, Lawmakers Changing Course as Non-Traditional Nicotine Surges

Jackson Bakich
Jackson Bakich
May 1, 2024

Americans appear to be ditching cigarettes and switching to vape devices and tobacco-less nicotine pouches, such as Zyn. These products have completely rearranged the Big Tobacco market, especially between the two biggest players (who used to be partners), Altria and Phillip Morris International.

The two companies agreed in 2007 that PMI would “spin-off” from Altria and sell the former groups’ cigarette brands overseas. Altria would sell its smokes domestically. However, back then, smoke-free products were not nearly as much of a player in the market as much as today.

According to Carol Ryan of The Wall Street Journal, 40% of nicotine purchases sold in the U.S. were non-traditional products (smoke-free). Cigarettes used to be 80% of America’s market. They are now just 60%.

So why does this matter? What’s the big deal about nicotine changing course? It’s because lawmakers everywhere are looking to adapt to the changing times.

If there is some general feeling that non-traditional nicotine delivery systems are healthier for the human body, then lawmakers will look to capitalize. And they have.

In Florida, Governor Ron DeSantis (R-FL) intervened with the state legislature resulting in HB 1007 – Nicotine Products and Dispensing Devices – passing both chambers significantly different than the legislation’s original language, but it could be argued that the end goal was still reached: keeping vapes out of the hands of children.

Initially, the bill was set to ban vape devices that were not approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Only 23 products – all owned by Big Tobacco – were deemed legal by the bill. This would’ve severely affected small business vape shops as they wouldn’t be able to compete with the corporate conglomerates.

In Alabama, state lawmakers are pushing for heated tobacco products (which are different than nicotine-juice vapes as heated tobacco products use processed tobacco leaves). These products do not require combustion like cigarettes do.

According to Alabama Political Reporter’s Bill Britt, House Bill 438 and Senate Bill 96 are geared toward a “restructured tax framework specifically for heated tobacco products.”

With all of this in mind, it appears that Big Tobacco will find a way to move on from cigarettes as its main source of income should the data continue to trend in the direction it is going.

A New World that was built from scratch by the cash crop that is tobacco, in the harsh conditions of Jamestown, could soon be dominated by pure nicotine pouches and blueberry-flavored vape devices.

Related Posts

Jackson Bakich

Jackson Bakich

Born in Orlando but raised in Lake County, Florida, Jackson Bakich is currently a senior at Florida State University. Growing up in the sunshine state, Bakich co-hosted the political talk radio show "Lake County Roundtable" (WLBE) and was a frequent guest for "Lake County Sports Show" (WQBQ). Currently, he is the Sports Editor of the FSView and the co-host of "Tomahawk Talk" (WVFS), a sports talk radio program covering Florida State athletics in Tallahassee.

Subscribe to the newsletter everyone in Florida is reading.

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.


More Related Posts