Sucralose dominates food and drink product launches

Related tags Product launches Aspartame Mintel

Food makers opt for the latest darling of the sweetener industry,
sucralose, for their new products with fresh data showing this
sweetener gained ground over aspartame and Acesulfame K in new
launches using sweeteners, for the first six months of the
year,reports Lindsey Partos.


At 458, nearly fifty per cent of the total 942 food and drink product launches with sweeteners in their formulations contained only​ sucralose, reports analysts Mintel​, for January to June.

By comparison, 300 products (32 per cent) were made with the amino acid sweetener aspartame, and 184 (about 20 per cent)products with the high intensity sugar replacer Acesulfame K, roughly 200 times sweeter than sugar.

On the back of rising health concerns in society, sweeteners are enjoying considerable growth as food and beverage makers seek to slice the calories from their formulations.

The market for sweeteners is pitched to grow at about 8.3 per cent year on year until 2008, far outpacing industry growth currently around 3 to 4 per cent.

Sucralose, the only non-caloric sweetener made from sugar, is 600 times sweeter than sucrose and in recent months has enjoyed a steep rise in demand from manufacturers.

Indeed Tate & Lyle, the patent holder of the Splenda sucralose brand, has been obliged to extend Splenda facilities at its US Alabama plant, as well as bringing a new $175 million factory online next year in Singapore to meet demand.

According to the Mintel​ data, beverages dominated, by far, the product launches using sucralose to June, with 106 new products hitting the shelves.

In fact, in February this year number one global soft drinks player Coca-Cola launched a new version of Diet Coke using Splenda, and complete with the sweetener's logo on the packaging.

Confectionery came a distant second, with 74 product launches, and snacks and desserts in third and fourth position respectively.

Processed fish, meat and egg products, along with side dishes and soups, fell into the last position with just one product launch for each category.

Approved in more than 100 countries, aspartame, about 200 times sweeter than sucrose, is made from two kinds of amino acids - aspartic acid and phenylalanin, with the number one supplier Japanese firm Ajinomoto.

According to Mintel​, confectionery launches, with 89, hit the number one slot, followed by beverages with 87 and dairy products with 46 new launches during the six month period.

Acesulfame potassium (K), supplied by Nutrinova and known as the additive E950, gained approval in the EU in 1983; the additive has been cleared in about 90 countries worldwide, including the US, since 1988.

Nutrinova claims that its sweetener is used in over 4000 food and beverage products worldwide.

According to the Mintel data, confectionery dominated launches for products containing the acesulfame potassium sweetener, with 60 products pushed onto the market.

Beverages (42), bakery (22) and dairy (15) hit the second, third and fourth positions.

Product data was supplied by Mintel's Global New Products Database.

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