Cargill and Evolva Holding SA (SIX: EVE) announced that their development program for fermentation-based steviol glycosides is moving into pilot scale ahead of schedule, potentially making it available for commercialization sooner than expected. Earlier this year, Cargill and Evolva entered into an agreement to jointly develop and commercialize fermentation-based steviol glycosides. Steviol glycosides are the compounds responsible for the sweet taste of stevia plant leaves.
“We are confident about our technical progress to date and are now moving to pilot scale in 2013 versus the original plan of 2014,” said Jill Zullo, technical director, Cargill.
Fermentation-derived steviol glycosides will benefit food and beverage manufacturers by enabling cost-effective, commercially relevant sweetening solutions that include the best-tasting minor steviol glycosides.
“The stevia market is focused on understanding the subtleties of how different steviol glycosides interact to create the most pleasing sweetness profile,” said David Henstrom, global business director for Health Ingredients, Cargill. “This technology complements Cargill’s existing and forthcoming innovations in stevia-based sweeteners. With this development, it gives us the confidence to deeply engage with customers to identify great tasting solutions.”
“The pace of progress in this collaboration with Cargill has exceeded our expectations,” said Evolva CEO Neil Goldsmith. “This is terrific news for not only producers, but also for the consumers around the world who will be able to enjoy a much broader spectrum of reduced-calorie products.”