California-based Sweegen, a global innovator of sweetness and flavor, announced that its Bestevia Rebaudiosides M (Reb M), D and E have received full authorization from the Taiwan FDA for use in food and beverages.

The regulatory approval marks a milestone in Sweegen opening new markets in countries where brands seek new generation stevia ingredients, the company says.

High-purity steviol glycoside Reb M, which is derived from the stevia plant, is renowned for its clean and sugar-like taste profile. Reb M is in the best-tasting parts of the stevia leaf and is found in trace quantities of the leaf’s composition, according to the company

Sweegen’s Reb M technology offers a multitude of significant advantages for both food and beverage producers. Sweegen’s Signature Stevia starts with stevia, and the ingredient innovator then leverages proprietary bioconversion technology to produce a range of zero-calorie sweeteners, the company explains. These sweeteners are assured in quality, regulatory compliance and competitive prices, all while generating a lower carbon footprint, it adds.

As the company has excelled in commercialization and securing essential regulatory approvals, Sweegen has experienced substantial sales growth throughout the year. Aside from the regulatory approvals, which the company considers to be “critical,” it is now offering food and beverage manufacturing customers the right to use its Reb M in all non-alcohol beverages anywhere in the world — without infringing on application patents.

“At Sweegen, our focus revolves around safety, quality and adherence to regulatory standards,” said Hadi Omrani, vice president of technical and regulatory affairs, in a statement. “We are expanding our global footprint by opening new markets to create access to innovative sweetener technologies.”

Sweegen has been working to establish and expand production facilities in major markets, as there has been increased interest from global CPG companies and their desire for guaranteed capacity and supply chain redundancy, it notes.

“The approval of Bestevia Reb M in Taiwan represents a breakthrough for brands aiming to create better-for-you foods and beverages,” said Casey McCormick, vice president of global innovation, in a statement. “Bestevia Reb M’s opens innovative avenues for reducing and even eliminating sugar, surpassing consumer expectations and contributing to public health goals aimed at curtailing sugar intake.”

Sweegen recently achieved FEMA GRAS status for its sweet proteins, brazzein and thaumatin II, which all serve as valuable complements to steviol glycosides in food and beverage production.

These proteins are important for food and beverage manufacturers to meet demand for better-for-you products and align with consumers’ holistic wellness preferences, it says. Sweegen’s newly launched Sweetensify flavor puts brazzein technology at center stage, and is an “ideal tool” for companies looking to replicate sugar-like tastes.