Cyvex Nutrition, Irvine, Calif., announced that its Euro Black Currant extract has achieved self-affirmed generally recognized as safe (GRAS) status.

Sensient Technologies Corp., Milwaukee, promoted Mark Goldschmidt to the position of corporate director of quality and product safety. Sensient Colors LLC, St. Louis, a business unit of Sensient Technologies Corp., announced that its U.S. manufacturing site in St. Louis achieved an Excellent rating score for the annual Safe Quality Food (SQF) 2000 Level 3 recertification. It also reported that its Sensient Food Colors Germany natural colors production facility was approved and certified by Halal Control.

Wellmune WGP, the natural immune health ingredient from Biothera, Eagan, Minn., now is available in U!be Group Inc.’s MediChá functional beverages. MediChá is a tea concentrate shown to address the health concerns of people with metabolic syndrome, the company explains. According to clinical results published in the peer-reviewed journal Food Science & Nutrition, Wellmune WGP was found to reduce allergy symptoms and improve the quality of life for those allergic to ragweed. Wellmune WGP also now is available in a drinkable yogurt product from Grupo Gloria, Peru. The Pro Defensis vanilla and strawberry yogurt drinks add a 100-mg dose of Wellmune WGP’s immunity benefits to the gut health benefits of probiotics in a convenient, familiar format for consumers, the company says. Additionally, Dave Ellis and Joy Dubost joined the Biothera Healthcare Scientific Advisory Board, it reports. 

Kyowa Hakko USA, New York, announced that its Sustamine ingredient has been added to Champion Nutrition’s Invigorate sports drinks to help rehydrate consumers and sustain their energy levels during exertion, it says.

Tate & Lyle, London, launched its new Open Innovation portal as a tool for creating online partnerships and collaborating with third parties to create, enhance and research new ingredient possibilities.

Cargill, Minneapolis, released its Truvia sustainability program update, which outlines the company’s progress to date on the three pillars of its sustainability program: sourcing responsibly, stewarding natural resources, and sharing in improving communities. Furthermore, the certification arm of U.K.-based Carbon Trust has certified the total greenhouse gas emissions at every stage of the supply chain, including cultivation, processing, packaging, transport, and use and disposal, for the Truvia brand. In related news, Cargill and Riyadh, Saudi Arabia-based Arasco announced their intention to create a new starches and sweeteners joint venture in Saudi Arabia. The new joint venture company will acquire Arasco’s existing corn milling facility in Al Kharj and will produce starch-based products primarily for the Gulf Cooperation Council countries of Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar and Bahrain, as well as Yemen, Iraq and Jordan.

Joe Severson was named director of operations for Steviva Brands, Portland, Ore.

Ingredion Inc., Westchester, Ill., has been granted a patent in the United States for its latest clean-label starch technology, which is based on new processing technology that allows the production of high-performance and high-quality functional native starches.

American Key Food Products (AKFP), Closter, N.J., introduced Suchero brand organic coconut palm sugar to the North American market. As the exclusive distributor, AKFP now offers this all-natural, low-glycemic-index sugar for use in beverages, baked goods and energy bars and also as a tabletop sweetener.

Morris Plains, N.J.-based Beneo Inc., a division of the Südzucker Group, announced that its natural and prebiotic fiber inulin has been formulated into Brioni’s Healthy Morning Coffee from Brioni’s Coffee Co. LLC, Glastonbury, Conn.

Sweet Green Fields, Bellingham, Wash., announced its introduction of the Select Fields Program, targeting food and beverage manufacturers who seek high-quality stevia extract from American-grown crops. The program stems from customer demand for U.S.-grown stevia that produces high-yielding and cost-effective products with a consistent taste profile, the company says. The program will allow customers to secure Sweet Green Fields stevia extracts grown from the 2013 U.S. crop season.

Burcon NutraScience Corp., Vancouver, Canada, has completed building its first commercial-scale plant to produce Peazazz, a pea protein that offers exceptional usability and high-quality protein nutrition, it says. Peazazz is created through a proprietary patent-pending process that delivers a highly purified product with a greater than 90 percent protein concentration on a moisture-free basis. Peazazz is completely soluble and transparent in beverage applications, it adds.

Mark Johnson joined Ham Lake, Minn.-based Bioenergy Life Science Inc. as vice president of sales for functional foods. Johnson’s major responsibilities will be to work with domestic and international food companies to incorporate Bioenergy Ribose into a variety of functional food products to help improve their functional and health benefits.

FONA International, Geneva, Ill., appointed Luke Slawek as president, TJ Widuch as executive vice president, and Robert Sobel as vice president of research, quality and innovation. It also hired Ibrahima Faye as a certified flavorist for beverages and Josh Vernoski as regulatory affairs manager. 

The Guelph Food Technology Centre (GFTC), a Canadian leader in food safety certification, training, quality and technical solutions, has merged with Ann Arbor, Mich.-based National Sanitation Foundation (NSF) International, a global public health and safety organization with a similar history in food safety and training. Going forward, the organization will be known as NSF-GFTC. The NSF-GFTC team and location will remain in Guelph, Ontario.

Virgo, Phoenix, Ariz., announced the agenda and opened registration for its 2013 Global Expo and Conference, SupplySide MarketPlace, taking place April 30-May 2 at the Jacob Javits Center in New York City.

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office issued the patent for the application entitled “Composition for Treating Obesity and Method of Using the Same” for Las Palmas, Spain-based Polifenoles Naturales, S.L.’s Xanthigen dietary supplement.

 The Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit GmbH (GIZ), Bonn and Eschborn, Germany; BASF, Florham Park, N.J.; and Cargill Inc., Minneapolis, have partnered to launch a program to develop a certified coconut oil supply chain to enhance sustainability and improve the livelihoods of 2,500 coconut growers in the Philippines. The partnership is co-financed by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) through its program