Tea receives 'Happy Tooth' label

by Jeff Gelski
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BASEL, SWITZERLAND — Toothfriendly International has bestowed its "Happy Tooth" label on a new ice tea sweetened with isomaltulose instead of sucrose. Bishofszell, a Swiss-based beverage manufacturer, launched the tea, which will be on sale in Switzerland this spring and is scheduled to appear in Germany and U.K. supermarkets later this year.

Researchers at the University Dental Institute of Zurich in Switzerland performed scientific pH tests on the tea. Results showed no risk for caries since the tea did not depress the plaque-pH below the critical level of 5.7. Teeth may be damaged when the acid concentration level falls below 5.7.

Isomaltulose, composed of glucose and fructose, resists decomposition by oral bacteria and thus protects teeth from decay, according to Toothfriendly International, a Basel-based non-profit organization dedicated to improving dental health. Members include dental professionals, institutions in dental and public health, and manufacturers of confectionery and oral care products.

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