Tate & Lyle today announced it has entered into a five-year strategic partnership agreement with BioVittoria Ltd. for the exclusive global marketing and distribution rights for BioVittoria’s monk fruit. Tate & Lyle will be marketing the products in the U.S. under the PUREFRUIT™ brand name. The only fruit-based calorie-free sweetening ingredient available today, natural monk fruit extract is a great-tasting way to reduce sugar and calories in foods and beverages, offering a unique value proposition to consumers. This agreement expands Tate & Lyle’s broad portfolio of wellness ingredients and advances the company’s strategy of extending its leadership position as a global provider of specialty food ingredient solutions.
According to terms of the agreement, New Zealand-based BioVittoria will award exclusive global sales and distribution rights to Tate & Lyle for its monk fruit extract. Tate & Lyle will support the development of the line of PUREFRUIT™ products with sales, research, marketing and product development. Using proprietary, natural methods, the Tate & Lyle research team has further refined and improved the taste of its PUREFRUIT™ products for a wide array of commercial uses. BioVittoria will continue management of the monk fruit extract supply chain, including seedling cultivation, the grower network and natural processing.
“BioVittoria is a leader in the innovation and development of this great-tasting natural fruit-based product, and has made significant investment in the monk fruit supply chain and processing to enable us to bring it to the market,” explains Karl Kramer, President, Innovation & Commercial Development, Tate & Lyle. ” In addition to its great taste, PUREFRUIT™ enables a ‘sweetened with fruit extract’ label claim, which our research shows is extremely appealing to consumers.”
“Tate & Lyle is a recognized global leader in ingredients and solutions,” says David Thorrold, Chief Executive Officer, BioVittoria. “They have both the resources and food and beverage relationships to accelerate the adoption of this unique natural ingredient.”
Monk fruit is also known as luo han guo and is native to South East Asia where it has been in use for hundreds of years. Its pulp is steeped in hot water to release a natural, calorie-free sweetening ingredient that’s around 200 times sweeter than sugar. Monk fruit extract received a letter in January 2010 stating that FDA had no questions after receipt of BioVittoria's GRAS (Generally Recognized As Safe) notification.
PUREFRUIT™ is an extract made from monk fruit that can be formulated into a variety of foods including beverages, dairy, cereal, confectionery and bakery products.