Innovative Startups Revolutionizing Sugar Reduction

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KANSAS CITY — Three small startups have made huge strides in sugar reduction, with innovative approaches to reducing sugar in food and beverages. Bonumose, Inc., based in Charlottesville, VA, has created a cost-effective “rare sugar” using plant-based raw materials and enzymatic processing steps. The Supplant Co., from Cambridge, UK, has created Supplant sugars from fiber-rich parts of crops, like stems, stalks, husks and cobs. DouxMatok, from Petach-Tikva, Israel, produces Incredo sugar, which uses cane or beet sugar and is up to 50% lower in sugar than traditional products.

DouxMatok began when Eran Baniel received a phone call from his father’s housekeeper. His father, Avraham Baniel, PhD, a chemist, was experimenting with sweeteners in his kitchen. Eran Baniel organized a meeting with an innovation team from Strauss Group, and incorporated DouxMatok the next day. The company, which now has 24 patents, offers Incredo sugar, which improves the efficiency of sugar delivery to the sweet taste receptors and enhances the perception of sweetness, enabling sugar reduction without compromising taste.

Bonumose, Inc., based in Charlottesville, VA, has created a cost-effective “rare sugar” using plant-based raw materials and enzymatic processing steps. Tagatose, the rare sugar produced by Bonumose, is 90% as sweet as regular sugar, with no bitter notes or off-flavors. The Hershey Co. and ASR Group have partnered with Bonumose, and the company has received a “no questions” letter from the FDA about the GRAS status of its tagatose process. Bonumose opened its first commercial production facility in 2022.

The Supplant Co., from Cambridge, UK, has created Supplant sugars from fiber-rich parts of crops, like stems, stalks, husks and cobs. The fiber-rich sweeteners behave like traditional sugars in food, but are lower in calories and have a lower glycemic response.