Stevia has been used in sodas marketed as dietary supplements and in other countries for sweetening treats and other foods but before now was not officially approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Experts had predicted the FDA would approve before the end of the year and the market for natural-based sweeteners would rise exponentially. December is as close to the New Year as can be and seems like the perfect time for introducing new products.
Officially recognized by the FDA this week, Cargill received the notification in the form of a letter stating that they have no objection to the previously submitted research that rebaudioside A (rebiana) Truvia’s scientific name has been generally recognized as safe (GRAS). The letter continues to support Truvia’s safety and the research behind a panel of experts from an independent company that provided the data.
What is PureVia?
PepsiCo has also teamed up with Merisant to produce PureVia another stevia-based sweetener, which also received the same FDA safety letter this week.
Cargill has complete confidence in this product and is elated at the recent findings that stevia-based sweeteners are now safe for use by all consumers. Marcelo Montero, president of Cargill, stated, ‘The FDA brought the appropriate rigor to the process and we are extremely pleased with the news.’
Other sweeteners containing the popular sugar-substitute aspartame like NutraSweet and Sweet N’ Low, have been FDA approved for decades providing a low-calorie additive for coffee and tea drinkers everywhere. However, FDA approval doesn’t always mean regular consumption is safe or healthy, and there are many related news articles linking health problems with these artificial sweeteners.
A member of the chrysanthemum family, stevia has been used in its native country for various uses. With over 200 varieties of the shrub, all stevia products are not created equal. There are many stevia-made products on the market right now and the newest to be given a green light from the FDA is called Truvia, developed by Cargill and owned by Coca-Cola.