GRAS (Generally Recognized As Safe) status has been self-affirmed by Horizon Science for Benecarb™, a molasses-based ingredient which has been proven to lower the blood glucose response of a range of food products, including sugar, using an entirely natural ingredient.
An independent scientific panel of experts, headed by James Heimbach, PhD and President JHeimbach LLC., evaluated Benecarb™.
“This panel has individually and collectively reviewed the information and unanimously concluded that there is no evidence that demonstrates, or suggests reasonable grounds to suspect a hazard to the public health when Benecarb™ is used as intended,” said Heimbach.
A derivative of sugar cane molasses, Benecarb™ is intended to be added to carbohydrate-containing foods as a functional ingredient. Categories in which it is most applicable include sweeteners/sugars (beet, sugarcane), cereals and cereal products (biscuits, bars, ready- to-eat cereals), beverages (soft drinks, energy drinks, juices), meal replacers (dairy and non-dairy based), preserves and confectionary (candy and chocolate bars), ice-cream, and cakes.
The ingredient has already been used to lower the blood glucose response of natural sugar and has established a solid market position in Australia, where under the LoGiCane brand, it makes up 10% value share of the raw sugar market. Also available in New Zealand and Hong Kong at retail, Benecarb™ is the active ingredient sprayed onto sugar cane crystals, resulting in retention of natural polyphenols and minerals as well as reducing the Glycemic Index (GI) from 65 for regular table sugar to 50 for LoGiCane.
“Achieving GRAS status for Benecarb™ creates a significant commercial opportunity for Horizon Science to license its patented ingredients to food and beverage manufacturers who are seeking to improve the nutritional health profile of their products,” said Ashok Dhanrajgir, CEO Horizon Science.
“The scientific support for this entirely natural ingredient, which has the ability to positively affect blood glucose and insulin levels, provides a very real potential solution to lowering obesity and diabetes rates worldwide,” he concluded.
Benecarb™ is produced from sugar cane molasses by a fractionation process. No chemical process is used to produce this substance, and thus Benecarb™ components are all present with no chemical alteration in the molasses from which it is produced. Benecarb™ has an ORAC value over three times that of green tea providing a high source of natural polyphenols and antioxidants.