The International Society of Beverage Technologists (ISBT), Dallas, hosted its annual BevTech meeting from April 30 to May 2 in San Diego. The agenda included technical presentations and sessions about industry-wide topics such as sustainability, health and wellness, and updates about the changing regulatory environment.

Gary Roberts, partner at law firm SNR Denton, provided the April 30 keynote presentation about California’s Proposition 65 legislation and its potential effects on the beverage industry.  Proposition 65 is the Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986, which requires the governor of California at least each year to publish a list of chemicals known to the state to cause cancer or reproductive toxicity.

On May 1, Andreas Kadi of Energy Drinks Europe delivered a keynote presentation about the opportunities and challenges of energy drinks. Kadi is the former chief science officer of Red Bull GmbH and presently is the chief executive officer and founder of Austrian company SraConsulting.

Regulatory issues also were the focus of the keynote presentation on May 2 that discussed The Food Safety Modernization Act of 2011. Delivered by Chris Hagenbush, principal at Hagenbush and Associates, the speech was themed around the question, “A pound of prevention?” and covered the U.S. Food and Drug Administration federal legislation enacted in January 2011, which shifted the department’s focus from responding to contamination to preventing it.

In addition to keynote sessions, BevTech also included sessions on caramel color, beverage analysis and equipment sterilization. Specific topics that were presented during the meeting include the following: “Stevia Purification/Analytical Testing Challenges,” “Analyzing Regular and Diet Soft Drinks without Sample Preparation,” “Natural Colors — Possibilities and Challenges,” “Fountain Equipment Sanitation Guidelines,” and “Plastic Packaging Sustainability.”

Each day, technical committee forums were presented across a variety of industry topics, including the following: non-traditional beverages, quality, supply chain, packaging, sanitation, fountain equipment, global issues and technology, product and ingredient technology, and environmental health and safety.

On April 30, ISBT’s Sweetener technical committee highlighted research on the ingredient category’s various components, such as high fructose corn syrup, stevia and sucrose. In addition, the sweetener session also featured presentations on the following topics: “Enzyme-Treated Stevia vs. Reb A: Battling Bitterness in Beverages,” “A Natural Zero-Calorie Sweetening Solution — From Fruit,” and “Sucrose Stability in Acid Beverages.”

 This year, ISBT also added a new Beverage Operations and Processing technical committee. During BevTech, the Beverage Processing forum offered the following presentations: “Beverage Processing 101,” “Beverage Manufacturing Challenges Created by Today’s ‘New Age’ Consumer” and “Innovative Changes in Basic Beverage Equipment.” BI