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.