German startup Savanna Ingredients GmbH has begun producing initial quantities of allulose with the goal of producing the natural, virtually calorie-free sugar on a larger scale.
The sugar’s calorie content is 0.2 kcal, which would fall under the European Union’s “without calories” classification. Savanna plans to apply for approval to classify the product as a foodstuff in Europe.
Allulose’s taste and functional characteristics make it suitable for different applications, including soft drinks and bakery items, among others. Production capabilities are being expanded at Savanna’s Elsdorf site to accommodate future demand.
“Natural sugar without calories occurs in nature — but only in very small quantities to date.” said Timo Koch, Savanna Ingredients managing director. “We have gained access to this way of nature and developed a method for producing real sugar without calories from sugar beets on a large scale – in other words, the ability to produce it for many people.”
Savanna Ingredients was founded in 2017 by the Innovation Center of sugar producer Pfeifer & Langen, the third largest in Germany. The company develops new sugars and functional carbohydrates using natural ingredients.
The German Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture is funding Savanna’s research as part of the country’s strategy to cut down on fat, salt and sugar in its food products.
Savanna has also developed a product called cellobiose, which serves as a lactose substitute that has half the calories of normal sugar. Part of the development of these products is due to the ongoing push for healthier alternatives in candy and soda products.