Synthetic and ‘natural’ nicotine – the real difference is just a matter of bureaucracy

While synthetic nicotine has become the focus of much controversy, demonised as a public health risk, its currently poor reputation derives more from bureaucracy than from the substance itself.

Studies suggest synthetic nicotine is as safe as the tobacco-derived kind, which itself has very little impact on health, other than being as addictive as, say, caffeine.

The recent US spotlight on synthetic nicotine derives entirely from the fact that it fails to fit the definition of a “tobacco product” and so has until now escaped US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) oversight.

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