HOWTIAN Achieves Breakthrough in Environmental Sustainability with Stevia Life Cycle Assessment

HOWTIAN Achieves Breakthrough in Environmental Sustainability with Stevia Life Cycle Assessment

February 12, 2024 – In a significant milestone for its ongoing commitment to sustainability, HOWTIAN has completed a comprehensive Life Cycle Assessment of its key stevia product lines. The study was conducted by the renowned Switzerland-based Société Générale de Surveillance (SGS), the world’s leading inspection, verification, testing and certification company, and examined key measures of environmental impact including carbon and water footprint. By achieving results that are vastly superior than the performance of conventional sugar, the assessment demonstrates HOWTIAN’s commitment to be a leader of environmental sustainability among manufacturers of natural sweeteners.

In response to consumer demand in recent years, the Fast-Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) sector has made significant strides in adopting more stringent standards of sustainability, with impacts felt especially in the selection and sourcing process of ingredients for food & beverage products. Recognizing this trend, ingredient manufacturers – with the stevia sector being no exception – have been proactive in assessing their products’ environmental impact.

Tom Fuzer, VP of Market Strategy at HOWTIAN, states, “With the CO2 footprint of stevia typically less than a quarter than that of sugar, stevia producers have eager to raise industry awareness that the popular plant-based sweetener is one of the most environmentally friendly solutions available.” To further advance these efforts for the industry, HOWTIAN undertook an extensive Life Cycle Assessment of its high purity Rebaudioside A 97 stevia — one of the most prevalent forms of extract sold by stevia producers.

The assessment revealed that HOWTIAN’s high purity Reb A outperforms traditional sugar in sustainability metrics while helping to establish and progress industry standards for key environmental performance indicators. For the basis of its analysis, SGS determined what the environmental footprint would be from producing and processing HOWTIAN’s Reb A 97 in order to generate the equivalent sweetness of 1 metric ton of white sugar. When these results were compared to like-for-like metrics for cane sugar, the study found that HOWTIAN achieved:

  • 78% reduction in CO2 emissions compared to cane sugar
  • 77% reduction in water usage
  • 94% reduction in agricultural land usage

“We are delighted with the outstanding results of our sustainability efforts. They are a testament to the success of our dedicated Sustainability Program, a program we started in 2017 to develop high-yielding plant variants and invest in energy and water-efficient extraction technologies. This only further strengthens our ambition to set and continuously improve the marketplace standard in sustainability for stevia and the broader sweetener industry.”

Tom fuzer, vp of market strategy

This historic achievement aligns with HOWTIAN’s global efforts to reduce environmental impact and showcases the company’s role in helping to lead these initiatives for food and beverage manufacturers everywhere.

HOWTIAN Interview in Baking & Snack: The Rise of Natural Sweeteners

HOWTIAN Interview in Baking & Snack: The Rise of Natural Sweeteners

August 18, 2023 — In the newest issue of their magazine, the Baking & Snack editors interviewed HOWTIAN for insights and expertise on the rise of natural sweeteners in baked goods. Titled “A Natural Fit: Bakers Win Over Increasingly Health-Conscious Consumers With Natural Sweeteners,” the article looks at consumer demand for natural alternatives to sugar — and more so, the stigma that surrounds “artificial sugar substitutes” like aspartame, sucralose and saccharin.

In the article, our technical experts Hank Wang and Michelle Yin talk about all the different ways that natural sweeteners are taking off for baking, from the declining reputation of artificial sweeteners to our convenient “drop-in” sugar replacement solutions for baking. In working with a vast variety of baked goods manufacturing customers, it’s evident that the adoption of solutions like stevia for sugar reduction and reformulation is here to stay.

“Those who have engaged in sugar reduction efforts earlier than others recognize this not just as a shift in consumer tastes, but as an emerging business and marketplace opportunity,” stated Yin.

Leveraging our experience and track record of success, HOWTIAN provided insight on expert formulation techniques with stevia in the baking sector to combat challenges like early-onset sweetness, bulking and moisture retention.

“For example, stevia has a more delayed onset of sweetness compared to sugar, so you may consider complementing it with an alternative like allulose or erythritol which exhibits an earlier onset of sweetness,” Wang noted.

To read the full story in Baking & Snack‘s August issue, click here.

If you’re in need of a partner and solutions for reformulating baked good products and applications, HOWTIAN experts are available to help meet your challenges. We can assist in developing a customized strategy for your product(s) with cost-effective solutions and sustainable supply. Please contact us to learn more.

HOWTIAN Introduces SoPure™ Galaxy – The Next-Generation Stevia for Dairy Applications

HOWTIAN Introduces SoPure™ Galaxy – The Next-Generation Stevia for Dairy Applications

July 6, 2023 – HOWTIAN reaffirms its commitment to providing cutting-edge solutions that meet evolving consumer preferences, elevate taste experiences, and contribute to the development of healthier products with a next-generation stevia product set to transform sugar reduction in the dairy sector.

HOWTIAN, the world’s #1 manufacturer of natural stevia, is proud to unveil its SoPure™ Galaxy-Series, a groundbreaking stevia product range specifically formulated to enhance dairy applications and meet growing consumer demand for healthier and more natural dairy products.

According to the Food & Agriculture Organization of the UN, the global dairy market boasts an extensive consumer base, with over 6 billion of the world’s population consuming dairy products on a daily basis. As consumer preferences shift towards healthier options — with “naturalness” as the #1 claim consumers expect in their dairy products according to a 2023 Innova Market Insights Survey — the reduction of sugar in dairy products has become a significant focus for the industry.

In response to this demand, dairy product manufacturers worldwide have been developing reduced-sugar yogurts, milky beverages, and other products to cater to evolving, health-conscious consumers — with “no added sugar,” “sugar-free,” and “low sugar” claims accounting for 10-11% of all dairy innovations.

As a result, more than one third of dairy products globally have chosen to use stevia over the past 5 years. Stevia has emerged as an ideal sugar substitute for dairy products due to its plant-based origin and associated health benefits.

Not all stevia is created equally, however. HOWTIAN witnessed the early challenges when adopting this natural solution for the dairy industry; after all, not all stevia varieties deliver optimal results in every application. To address these challenges, HOWTIAN’s Innovation and Science Centre, in collaboration with our dairy-industry experts and partners, embarked on a mission to develop an affordable and adaptable stevia product line specifically tailored for dairy applications.

We are proud to announce the launch of our new SoPure™ Galaxy-Series. Its namesake “Galaxy” derives from the Greek word for “Milky Way” and reflects the company’s ambition to lead dairy manufacturers into the future of natural sugar alternatives.

“The SoPure™ Galaxy-Series products offer an exceptional sensory profile in dairy, closely resembling the sweetness of full-sugar benchmarks, while also reducing development time and delivering up to 45% cost savings on the sweetener compound.”

Tom Fuzer, VP of Market Strategy at HOWTIAN

For manufacturers of dairy products the SoPure™ Galaxy-Series delivers:

  • Virtually identical sweetness profile to full sugar in yogurts
  • Enhanced milky notes & prolonged fruity flavors
  • Rich, creamy mouthfeel when combined with bulking agents
  • Clean label with zero calories

The SoPure™ Galaxy-Series has superior sensorial performance compared to high purity Reb A — at less than half the cost of Reb M — which is attributed to its incredible and consistent solubility. We look forward to partnering with the industry across all global markets, and to what we believe will be SoPure Galaxy’s transformative impact on sugar reduction for dairy products.

When Sugar Reduction Also Means Cost Reduction

When Sugar Reduction Also Means Cost Reduction

How current market volatility and rising sugar prices are boosting stevia as a solution not just for sugar reduction targets, but cost savings too

Rapidly rising sugar prices, consumer demand for natural alternatives, and never-ending supply chain woes… the list goes on.

In short, the food & beverage industry is exploring more-natural, less-sugary pastures for its consumers — leading to a sugar-replacement revolution.

Bloomberg reports:

  • Sugar prices are at a six-year high, and not expected to improve
  • The global sugar supply & demand gap is widening, reducing the stock-to-use ratio
  • India, Pakistan & others introduced sugar export restrictions

Moreover, high oil prices have led to competition for the output from the sugar sector, as economies are likely to use more cane sugar toward producing ethanol — further reducing the sugar supply.

Food and beverage manufacturers worldwide are feeling the squeeze in production costs, which contribute to the inflationary pressures on consumers.

Bottom line: Manufacturers are seeking cost-friendly alternatives. Consumers are seeking natural, low-sugar solutions. Research and development teams across all industries are actively searching for new solutions to meet these demands, all the while still maintaining the integrity of their products’ taste.

In these challenging times, stevia, a popular natural sugar alternative, has emerged as a promising solution.

Thanks to decades of agricultural science advancements and improvements in steviol glycoside yield levels, the global supply of stevia is healthy and cost-effective. Contrary to some reports of an industry shortage, the overall supply of stevia is at its lowest price point since it arrived on the global stage over a decade ago.

To help address this time of economic uncertainty and volatility, HOWTIAN is pleased to announce some welcome news for the industry and our manufacturing customers. Effective immediately, we are implementing another significant price reduction for SoPure™ Stevia Reb A 97, our most popular stevia product.

HOWTIAN’s industry-high yield has been instrumental in this rapid progress toward reducing product costs. Additionally, our commitment to sustainability provides further compelling reason for manufacturers to choose our stevia, as our newest stevia variants require less land, water and energy to produce.

HOWTIAN’s commitment to innovation and our customers’ needs will undoubtedly contribute to the continued growth and success of the sugar replacement revolution in these turbulent times. Throughout the years, the company has seen a wealth of success in transitioning popular products to delicious, cost-effective alternatives. The new and improved pricing will only accelerate the pace of these sugar reduction success stories.

To illustrate the reduced pricing in action, below is an example of a formulation for a ready-to-drink beverage application, and the 37 to 40 percent cost savings yielded with different sugar reduction scenarios.

IngredientsFull Sugar50% Reduced Sugar (+RA97)50% Reduced Sugar Improved Taste (+Andromeda)
Dosage (g)Dosage (g)Dosage (g)
Unsweetened Lemonade Powder0.370.370.37
SoPure™ Stevia – Reb A 970.02
SoPure™ Stevia – Andromeda0.018
Total (g)100100100
Cost Savings (%)40.48%37.14%
Note: Sugar cost is estimated and may be different in various countries.

Contact Us

HOWTIAN welcomes the world’s increasing demand for sugar alternatives and offers a wide range of readily adaptable solutions for a comprehensive variety of applications.

To learn more, please get in touch with one of our representatives.

HOWTIAN Interview in Food Ingredients First: Stevia Supply Chains

HOWTIAN Interview in Food Ingredients First: Stevia Supply Chains

May 3, 2023 — Food Ingredients First editors invited HOWTIAN to be part of a recent discussion about the supply chain issues impacting the stevia industry, and the ways that HOWTIAN is solving for those challenges.

In 2022, widespread drought throughout China — where a large percentage of the world’s stevia is produced — set to disrupt the stevia production and supply chain of the coveted crop. However, thanks to new production technologies, marketplace demand was met by HOWTIAN and others in the industry, and the stevia supply chain remained strong.

Stevia Business Unit Director Mavis Ran shed light on this surprising discovery for Food Ingredients First; caveating that HOWTIAN was “no exception” to recent climate and supply chain challenges. She commented:

“These challenges are driven by several factors, starting from macro issues like climate change, down to those more specific to stevia — such as the natural inconsistency of the key sweet components in stevia leaves.”

In an effort to combat these natural challenges, HOWTIAN mitigates risk through R&D investments, diversification of plantation regions and increasing steviol glycoside content in new leaf varieties that are better suited for a diversity of climate conditions.

“In 2022, a critical milestone for stevia was reached when we saw the industry’s highest ever Reb A yield of 12% from our newest leaf variety. This was welcome news for F&B manufacturers worldwide as stevia was more affordable and accessible than ever,” shares Ran.

Still, there are man-made factors that cause industry-wide issues like the rising cost of energy, inflation and labor costs. But again, HOWTIAN is confident in the reliability and availability of its stevia supply, rooted in the fact that its stevia is produced and grown by natural, sustainable methods. In fact, our proprietary clean extraction technology saves 60% in water consumption along with significant energy savings.

“Unlike ingredients that depend on chemical processing which can be affected by multiple cost impactors, natural stevia relies only on limited processing with fewer auxiliary materials,” Ran comments.

HOWTIAN’s long-term optimization efforts date back to before recent industry challenges. Our method and mission to produce a reliable supply of better-tasting stevia in a sustainable manner allows us to remain a leader in stevia production, even in the face of economic and natural challenges.

We’d like to thank Food Ingredients First for the opportunity to share our perspectives. You can read the full article here.

HOWTIAN Interview in Food Business News: The Outlook for Sugar Reduction

HOWTIAN Interview in Food Business News: The Outlook for Sugar Reduction

December 12, 2022 — Food Business News invited HOWTIAN to impart our perspective on the future of sugar reduction, and how sweetener blends provide food manufacturers a versatile toolset to achieve their formulation and reformulation goals. Our conversation with the FBN team was selected and featured in the latest issue of the magazine as its lead cover story, “Blending Sweeteners Brightens Sugar Reduction Outlook.”

As one of our leading experts in formulation, Technical Director Hank Wang discusses the unique ways product developers are successfully blending stevia, monk fruit, allulose and erythritol. The key is to understand how these natural sweeteners best complement each other, and why the different onsets of sweetness for each will help you replicate the taste profile of sugar.

In the interview, we talk about our proprietary stevia blends, DGS Sweet E100 and DGS Sweet F100 Baking, that are 1:1 replacements for sugar. Although the two blends are similar, F100 is better suited for achieving the desired consistency of a traditional baked good:

“Raw dough or batter made with F100 will be slightly stickier and softer, but it holds well with other binding agents. Binding agents help hold all the ingredients in a formulation together so it is not too crumbly, playing a big role in contributing to the texture you know and expect in a baked good.”

Thank you to Food Business News for giving us the opportunity to weigh in on where sugar reduction is evolving for the industry. You can read the full article here. Or if you’d like more insights on how to leverage HOWTIAN’s proprietary stevia blends for your product and application needs, reach out and connect with one of our formulation experts.