PepsiCo, Senomyx in sweetener collaboration

by Keith Nunes
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PURCHASE, N.Y. — PepsiCo, Inc. and Senomyx, an ingredient developer, have entered into a four-year agreement to utilize Senomyx’s sweet-taste technology. The collaboration will focus on the development and commercialization of sweetness enhancers and high-intensity sweeteners with the goal of developing and introducing lower-calorie beverages to the marketplace.

“This relationship with Senomyx reflects our increasingly long-term approach to research and development as well as our belief that global food and beverage companies can play an important role in identifying new ingredients that can lead to healthier products,” said Mehmood Khan, PepsiCo’s chief scientific officer. “The real challenge is to create products that not only are healthier but also taste great, and Senomyx has unique technologies that will allow us to improve the nutritional profile of our products without sacrificing taste. We’re very optimistic that this collaboration will help us achieve our commitment to reduce added sugar per serving by 25% in key brands in key markets over the next decade and ultimately help people around the world live healthier lives.”

PepsiCo will have exclusive rights to the Senomyx sweet flavor ingredients developed under the collaboration for use in non-alcoholic beverage categories, according to the companies. Under the agreement, Senomyx will receive an upfront payment of $30 million from PepsiCo. Senomyx also will be entitled to $32 million in committed research and development payments over the four-year research period. PepsiCo retains the option to extend the research collaboration for two more years, which would result in additional research funding commitments. Senomyx also will be eligible for milestone payments based on the achievement of predetermined goals as well as royalty payments.

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