Brussels has yet to fully clear the use of natural sweetener stevia in the EU but already suppliers are preparing the launch of products including the ingredient. Cargill and Associated British Foods are lining up the introduction of Truvia - a table-top sweetener made with stevia - in the UK and, in this month's just the answer, Dean Best met with executives from both sides to discuss their plans.
With the pull of consumer demand for diet or low-sugar foods and the push of regulatory pressure to reformulate products, food and beverage manufacturers are increasingly looking to intense sweeteners - and the new kid on the block, at least in key markets like the US and Europe - is stevia.
The food industry is paying increasing attention to stevia, a natural, zero-calorie sweetener that its suppliers claim can help manufacturers meet growing demand for healthier products. Stevia suppliers like UK-listed PureCircle are securing contracts with more of the food industry's leading names and today (30 July) the company's CFO William Mitchell talked to Dean Best about the development and potential of the ingredient.