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Seeking Natural Sweetener Alternatives with Compatible Bulking Agents

Background / Description

High intensity sweeteners (HIS) and sweetener systems, which are many times sweeter than sugar, are widely used as an alternative to sugar because they contribute few to no calories when added to foods. They are often used together with traditional sweeteners and/or bulking agents to get the best sweetness profile along with the other desirable functionalities. While there are existing natural HIS on the market, such as monk fruit (luo han guo) and apples, they are not cost competitive, difficult to handle and have limited availability.

There is a growing demand for healthier foods with less sugar that is driven by consumers who are seeking healthier options like low-calorie snacks. The intention is to avoid high sugar consumption which is a major cause of obesity and many chronic diseases, such as type 2 diabetes.

With a view to developing healthier foods, a leading snacks company is seeking sweetener alternatives that are natural HIS or sweetening systems that are a combination of sugar/hybrid sugar with artificial high intense. The solution should have a sweetness and flavour profile that is similar to sucrose, and be available at a reasonable cost. If the proposed sweetener lacks bulk, a bulking agent that can restore bulk, needs to be identified that works with the sweetener. This would allow the sweetener to be a suitable substitute in cases where the function of the sugar is to add bulk.

The company is open to various types of mutually-beneficial partnerships.

Technical Specifications

The sweetener sought must be able to meet the following specifications: 

  • Shelf stable and allows easy handling in terms of its solubility, dispersion and stability with regards to water uptake etc. It will not spoil under the normal conditions of handling and distribution.
  • Similar to the flavour profile of sucrose: 
    • No off notes
    • Not labelled as sugar in different geographies
    • Similar in cost to fructose, dextrose and other readily available sugars

What we are not interested in

We are not interested in existing market-ready versions of the following:

  • Stevia: It does not have a flavour profile that is similar to sucrose
  • Monk fruit: It is not cost competitive

Preferred Business Model

  • R&D Collaboration
  • Licensing
  • IP Acquisition
  • Business Collaboration (Joint Venture, Distribution)

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