Wild has obtained “Toothfriendly” certification for its Sunwin Stevia product – the first stevia ingredient to obtain the endorsement.
The Germany-based flavour specialist pursued approval from Toothfriendly International to help food and drink manufacturers develop “safe for teeth” products.
Approval was gained on the basis of a plaque-pH telemetry study conducted at the Dental Institute of the University of Zurich. This demonstrated that the Wild stevia product does not depress the plaque-pH below 5.7 - the critical level of acid concentration below which teeth can be damaged.
Gaining the seal of approval from Toothfriendly International means that food and drink makers can use Sunwin Stevia as a guaranteed toothfriendly ingredient in finished products.
First stevia product approved
Sunwin Stevia is the first stevia product to obtain Toothfriendly International certification.
Dr. Albert Bär, of Toothfriendly International, said stevia has great potential as a toothfriendly sweetener.
He said: “Stevia provides interesting opportunities for manufacturers of toothfriendly products. Stevia’s all-natural image will be compelling especially for those consumers who truly read labels and are health-conscious.”
Stevia is not the only sweetening option for beverage companies looking to formulate toothfriendly drinks. Toothfriendly International said other options include aspartame, sucralose and acesulfame-K.
Formulating toothfriendly drinks
For formulators the challenge of developing a toothfriendly drink does not stop with the choice of sweetener.
Kati Weiss from Toothfriendly International said: “It is easy to make sugar-free beverages, but if the goal is to formulate toothfriendly products, the real challenge is limiting the acidity of the drink.
“As most soft drinks contain high amounts of food acids (e.g. citric or malic acid), they will not qualify for being “toothfriendly” as they may cause severe erosion of the dental enamel. In order to become accredited as “Toothfriendly”, a product must be non-cariogenic and non-erosive.”