VANCOUVER, B.C. — GLG Life Tech Corp. on Dec. 10 said it had received a letter of no objection from the Food and Drug Administration regarding the Generally Recognized As Safe (GRAS) status of its extracts from luo han guo, also known as monk fruit (Siraitia grosvenorii Swingle). GLG Life Tech on June 9 sent a GRAS filing to the F.D.A. for the use of luo han guo in table top sweeteners and as a sweetener in foods.

The GRAS filing covers three luo han guo extracts: MV30, MV50 and MV 60V. The numbers pertain to the minimum levels (30%, 50% and 60%) of mogroside V in the extracts. Mogroside V is one of the sweetest parts of luo han guo.

Vancouver-based GLG Life Tech pointed out luo han go complements stevia, another natural, high-intensity sweetener, in achieving desired sweetness and flavor profiles in applications.

GLG Life Tech on Dec. 9 said it had used non-bioengineered breeding technology to develop stevia leaves with higher levels of Rebaudioside C steviol glycosides, which are known for their flavor profiles. Conventional stevia leaves have Reb C concentrations of about 1%, which leads to high processing costs to extract and purify the Reb C. GLG’s new H6 seedling strain contains nearly 7% Reb C. GLG Life Tech has filed for patent protection for its H6 seedling.