“The nation’s consumers are beginning to understand the negative impact of sugar, whether it’s with diabetes or pre-diabetes,” explained Michael May, Ph.D., CEO, Wisdom Naturals to Food Navigator-USA.
Over the next year, Sweetleaf and ADA will collaborate on events (Arizona’s Tour de Cure) and develop interactive resources surrounding education on mitigating diabetes risk.
“[SweetLeaf] will develop and promote recipes on the ADA’s Diabetes Food Hub website, join ADA-approved chefs for online cooking demos using SweetLeaf products, and provide awareness of the ADA’s free online Type 2 Diabetes Risk test to help people understand their risks for diabetes and tips to lower their risk," according to the company’s press release.
‘What we really want to do is give people a choice’
A producer of natural alternative sweeteners, SweetLeaf offers options for people with diabetes and consumers who are looking to manage their sugar consumption. Its portfolio includes all-natural, low/zero-sugar, low/zero-caloria, non-glycemic, diabetes-and keto-friendly, vegan, gluten-free and non-GMO products. These include stevia and monk fruit sweeteners, zero-sugar syrups and water enhancers (made of stevia).
For consumers who still prefer the taste of sugar, SweetLeaf is introducing reduced calorie coconut, date and cane sugars. Blended with stevie and monk fruit, these products offer a 50% reduction in calories. One of its newest formulations is a blend of stevia, monk fruit and allulose which is also zero calorie, but browns like sugar.
“What we really want to do is give people a choice,” May explained.
Consumer interest in natural sweeteners veers towards plant-based
With over 37 million diabetic Americans, mitigating sugar consumption is an ongoing critical health issue.
It’s an auspicious time for more low-to-no-sugar products considering the FDA’s recent draft guidance for “healthy” on food labels which proposes a limit on added sugar, along with saturated fat and sodium.
The challenge for CPG companies is to provide variety that caters to consumers’ shifting flavor, texture and wellness preferences.
According to Mintel, 56% of food and beverage products are free from artificial sweeteners as consumer interest in natural sweeteners veers towards plant-based. In response, more brands from emerging to multinational are developing or reformulating low and no-sugar products, as reported by Food Navigator-USA.
“The culture of plant-based sweeteners is currently relevant to almost 23 million U.S. consumers and is anticipated to nearly double within two years,” reports Mintel.