Next-generation stevia extract provides outstanding performance to satisfy nearly every sweet tooth.
Stevia can be confusing. But what is crystal clear is that consumers know stevia and understand that it enables the enjoyment of sweet treats, guilt-free. Market research firm Mordor Intelligence data expects that stevia sales is set to reach $1.2 billion in by 2026, while Euromonitor data shows that 1.578 tonnes of stevia were sold in 2022 and predicted a 4.2% CAGR through 2027.
Rebaudioside (Reb) A, Reb B, Reb M -- these naturally occurring stevia glycosides have been researched, tested and used in numerous products. As an example of research, Reb D and Reb M have recently been shown to provide superior taste and perceptions. The 2022 study gave 92 ice cream enthusiasts three test servings, each sweetened with a different Rebaudioside.
In this study, the “like” scores of Reb D- and M-sweetened ice creams were significantly higher than those of Reb A-sweetened ice cream. Consumers perceived the aftertastes of Reb D and M ice creams as being more “sweet, pleasant, creamy, and milky,” while Reb A was more “artificial and chemical.” Reb M showed a sweetness intensity comparable to sucrose. 1
However, formulating with any of the straight Rebs -- and Reb M -- often bring about challenges, such as flavor masking (to reduce bitterness), solubility issues, and cost, to name a few.
New from ADM is SweetRight® Stevia Edge-M, offering performance benefits that combine improved sweetening, reduced bitterness and better (~5x) solubility versus Reb M, ADM’s SweetRight® Edge-M meets nutritional targets and satisfies demanding taste requirements.
SweetRight® Stevia Edge-M has been tested in varied applications, and shown to allow for greater sugar reduction, while maintaining clean taste. It gives developers and food scientists superior sugar reduction solutions that balance price and desirable performance. Edge-M is lower in cost and higher in functionality.
The performance benefits of Edge-M include: high sugar reduction, reduced bitterness, improved sweetening, excellent solubility, clean taste, less need for taste modulation, zero calories, zero carbohydrates and zero glycemic index. In short -- this list shows that next-generation Edge-M can satisfy even the most discerning sweet tooth. Consumers will appreciate the fact that Edge-M is made from the leaf without any modifications.
The Edge-M Difference
Compared to Reb M, Edge-M exhibited superior characteristics such as better solubility, reduced bitterness and improved sweetening. 2
Additionally, Edge-M showed a step-wise improvement of maximum sweetness compared to Reb A. Edge-M is similar in sweet maximum response of Reb M 90. 2
As a concern for Reb M-containing products is an overly friendly sweetness, lingering in long after the last sip, Edge-M was examined in this regard and found to have the shortest lingering sensation compared to Reb A and Reb M. 2 “So while Edge-M is similar in achieving maximum sweetness like Reb M, the linger is reduced,” explained Sarah Diedrich, Marketing Director, Global Sweetening & Texturizing, ADM.
The degree of glycolysation in rebaudiosides affects the bitterness. Bitterness tends to be most potent in Reb A, necessitating flavor masking, bitterness blockers and taste modulation. Meanwhile, Reb M is currently known to have the least amount of bitterness response than any other Reb on the market, and this is also considered the gold standard. But when Reb M is used at higher levels, bitterness may be still be apparent.
In another study, Edge-M exhibited significant bitterness reduction compared to traditional Reb A stevia, and also has shown to have improved bitter taste lingering compared to Reb A and Reb M. 3 “Once again on the lingering aspect, we can see Edge-M is far improved in linger response than even Reb M, and far exceeds Reb A,” Diedrich related.
“There’s no need for consumers to swallow the bitter when enjoying the sweet,” she commented.
And, speaking of bitter -- when Edge-M is combined with erythritol or allulose, the bitter response is improved even more. These complementary ingredients also enhance sugar-like functionality such as humectant, bulking, freeze-point modulation, among others.3 “Both these studies also also show that you can include more stevia, which results in further sugar reduction in your product with improved sensory benefits.”
This is important because to mimic the full sensory profile of sucrose, low/no-calorie sweeteners are often used in combination to increase upfront sweetness and achieve higher overall intensity than most stevia can achieve on its own. Sucrose (table sugar) hits sensory receptors with a high sweetness then drops off quickly.
Solubility is often challenging especially with Reb M stevia glycosides; Reb A typically performs better here. Edge-M, however, solves this challenge with markedly improved solubility and very little fallout. In testing, Edge-M achieved approximately 5X increased solubility in aqueous solutions compared to Reb M.2
ADM's proprietary technology of stevia extraction and purification allows us to use the best of the stevia plant by maximizing the glycosides that taste best, while minimizing those with less desirable attributes. Edge-M is not enzyme modified nor is it created by fermentation or bioconversion.
ADM’s Holistic Sugar-Reduction Toolbox
SweetRight® stevia is part of ADM’s line of low- and no-calorie and specialty nutritive sweeteners. The SweetRight® portfolio was created to present comprehensive offerings that provide benefits beyond sweetness; they address the changing needs for consumer-friendly labels, calorie reduction, health & wellness trends and of course, taste satisfaction.
Sweetright® Edge-M is the newest implement in ADM’s holistic sugar-reduction toolbox.
Diedrich described, “Our unparalleled sugar-reduction toolbox is designed to not simply reduce sugars, but to replace, rebalance and rebuild the structural integrity lost—to ensure sweet success every time.
Replace Sweetness: ADM’s comprehensive sweetener lineup includes core and foundational sweeteners, specialty nutritive, fruit-based and low- and no-calorie ingredients to meet your products’ sugar-reduction targets.
Rebalance Flavor: ADM’s characterizing flavors bring out profiles that complement your sweetener system as well as improve overall taste perception.
Rebuild Functionality: The varied enabling ingredients in ADM’s sugar-reduction toolbox help rebuild texture, stability and nutritional functionality when reducing sugars.
ADM experts help achieve three desirable goals:
- Get your low-or no-sugar product to market faster
- Deliver optimal taste, mouthfeel and lower calories with a clean label
- Achieve desired sweetness while removing even more sugar, without the need for added modifiers or blockers
Stevia will likely grow in demand by consumers who do not want to compromise on the taste and experience of real sugar -- satisfy them with SweetRight® Edge-M.
1 Muenprasitivej, Foods 2022 Jun 14;11(12):1475
2 ADM Research (2022, October). Proprietary Steviol Glycoside Research Results & Analysis. Decatur; ADM Science & Technology.
3 ADM Research (2010-2023). Proprietary Sweetener and Specialty Sugars Research Results & Analysis. Decatur; ADM Science & Technology.