Stevia-based sweetener supplier targets U.S. market

by Jeff Gelski
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QUFU, CHINA – Sunwin International Nutraceuticals, Inc. has expanded production of its Rebaudioside A 95, a stevia-based sweetener, in anticipation of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration possibly clearing it for use in foods and beverages.

Stevia-based sweeteners already are cleared for use in dietary supplements. Earlier this year both Cargill and Whole Earth Sweetener Co. L.L.C. petitioned the F.D.A. for the use of stevia-based sweeteners in foods and beverages.

"We look forward to the anticipated full approval of stevia in the U.S. as an ingredient, which will significantly open the market for Sunwin," said Jeff Reynolds, president of Sunwin USA, Frisco, Texas, the U.S. subsidiary of Sunwin International Nutraceuticals.

Sunwin’s Reb A 95 is comprised of 99.5% steviol glycosides, the naturally occurring compounds that give stevia plants their sweetness. In Sunwin’s refined product, 96.5% of the stevia extract is comprised of Rebaudioside A and stevioside, two sweet compounds in stevia plants.

Reb A is used in OnlySweet, a dietary supplement already sold in the United States. Sunwin also produces lower steviol grade products for applications in foods and beverages.

"This expansion directly relates to the growing interest we see in the United States, both from the sale of our proprietary OnlySweet consumer product sold in 4,000 stores and rapidly expanding interest in using stevia in low-calorie and diet products for the food and beverage industry," Mr. Reynolds said of the production expansion.

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