This New Sugar Substitute Is Made From Natural Fruit

Fooditives sweetener is a healthy alternative.

Feb 21, 2020

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How do you take your coffee? Light and sweet? There are dozens of sweeteners to choose from, white cane sugar, unrefined organic sugar or perhaps one of the artificial sweeteners that have proliferated in recent years like Equal, Sweet N Low, or Stevia – one that is made from plant ingredients.

Now, a new company Fooditive has gotten into the sugar substitutes market with a new product made from  unsold apples and pears that do not have the environmental or health issues of the currant artificial sweeteners or cane sugars.

Artificial sweeteners made from sucralose and aspartame taste good (no aftertaste) and are found in many products. But, because they are not completely absorbed by our bodies and cannot be completely removed by wastewater treatment, these sweeteners end up in our waterways and according to a study could damage aquatic ecosystems.

Regular cane sugar also comes with a slew of environmental and social issues as well as contributing to health problems like diabetes. Other natural sweeteners like honey cannot be used by vegans.

Fooditive's founder Moayad Abushokhedim looked at the sweeteners that were available and  thought there had to be a better alternative. That's why he established Fooditive BV in 2018 in Rotterdam in the Netherlands and the company just introduced their sweetener on January 29, 2020. Most importantly, he wanted to do it in an environmentally sound way.

The company said that they wanted to make an improved product without having to invent something new. Rather, they decided to use something that was already produced and could be recycled into a new product.

They choose to use organic apple and pear waste from fruit that was unsold, could not be sold – like undersized, bruised or ugly fruit – from local Dutch markets and extract the natural fructose though a fermentation process. The result is the calorie-free , Fooditive Sweetener® that is eco-friendly as well as fair to the farmers who grow the produce.

The company also produces preserving agents made from carrot waste, thickening agents produced entirely from banana skin but doesn't contain the fruit's sweetness or smell, and emulsifiers fashioned from potato extracts.

“Sustainability is in our DNA; we don’t just consider it a marketing tool. It is our mission to develop food additives that contribute to a healthy body and a healthy environment,”  said Abushokhedim.

Fooditive is working with Rotterdam Circulair, a company that focuses on reusing and recycling waste whose mission it to develop a circular economy in Rotterdam by 2030. The company is using reusable or recyclable packaging and is taking responsibility for its carbon footprint too.

“Our products really provide the food and beverage producers with the ability to have a clean label, a green label, and show people what’s in their food,” Gijs Gieles, Fooditive spokesperson told Fast Company.

Gieles said that the company is working in the business-to-business market now and is using a third-party food industry company called Bodec to get the new sweetener into Dutch products. It is already being used in a beverage company.

Fooditive is already registered in Sweden and Gieles explained that they hope to expand into other Scandinavian countries, the UK and Jordan; where Abushokhedim is from. Right now, food regulations make a move to the US difficult, but they still hope to go global.

Finding products that fit our healthy lifestyles as well as our ethics is not that easy. Fooditive's commitments to sustainability, as well as the fair treatment of employees and farmers fits the bill.

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BONNIE RIVA RAS, EDITOR & WRITER
Bonnie Riva Ras has dedicated her life to promoting social justice. She loves to write about empowering women, helping children, educational innovations, and advocating for the environment & sustainability.