Oral Nicotine Pouches

      Oral Nicotine Pouches

      Our nicotine pouches are commercialized under the name Shiro. Nicotine pouches are smoke-free products that, by design, do not burn tobacco and create no aerosol or smoke at all. The pouch should be placed between the gum and upper lip for up to 30 minutes.

      What is inside?

      These pouches contain nicotine, together with water, flavorings, and plant-based fibers. The high purity, pharmaceutical grade nicotine in the pouches is extracted into the saliva and is absorbed mainly via the mucous membranes in the mouth before entering the bloodstream. Some nicotine can also reach the gastrointestinal tract if the saliva is swallowed.

      The nicotine pouch is made from organic cellulose compounds that create a non-woven fleece and its thickness helps to determine the nicotine release dynamics. The pouch serves as a container for the nicotine-containing substrate.

      The nicotine is a pharmaceutical grade nicotine, extracted from tobacco plants.

      The binder/filler helps determine the speed of nicotine release, as well as the characteristics of the physical feeling of the pouch inside the mouth. It consists of three parts:

      • The microcrystalline cellulose white powder that absorbs the nicotine
      • The gum
      • The hydrophilic solvent for stabilizing the level of humidity

      pH Buffer 
      If the pH level is too neutral, then nicotine won’t transfer across the mucosa. Anything above 9.1 becomes too basic and can be an oral irritant, which is why existing industry standards set that upper limit. Sodium carbonate or bicarbonate are commonly used to regulate the pH.

      The substrate includes E-numbered food-grade flavors, with most nicotine pouches having a mint flavor. PMI does not commercialize pouches with candy flavors for example, which may appeal to a younger audience.

      The science behind nicotine pouches

      While these nicotine pouches are a recent addition to our smoke-free product portfolio, there is clear empirical evidence showing that oral products have a strong potential to replace cigarettes for existing adult smokers and have a positive impact on public health. We have conducted initial assessments of our nicotine pouches before their launch, and we have finalized several pre-clinical studies, as well as a nicotine pharmacokinetics study. Further assessment of these products is planned and underway.