Evonik debuts new sugar-free sweetener solution to Asian markets

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14 Sep 2017 --- Evonik has launched Risumalt, a low-calorie, sugar-free sweetener solution with significant consumer and manufacturing benefits at the Food Ingredients (FI) Asia trade show currently being held in Bangkok, Thailand. 

Risumalt is Evonik’s brand of isomalt, a sugar-free substitution product that is naturally sourced from sucrose and has half the calories of sugar. Unlike traditional isomalt products, Evonik utilizes a new and proprietary manufacturing process that was developed by Creavis, Evonik’s strategic innovation unit. 

Isomalt is characterized by its low moisture uptake and excellent shelf-life properties of the end products. Due to its low glycemic index and non-cariogenic attributes, the sugar substitution solution is ideal for candies, pastries and dietary supplements targeting the diabetes market. It can easily be processed to drops, chewing gums, directly compressible tablets, cookies and confectioneries. 

Dr. Ludger Eilers, Director of Food Ingredients at Evonik Health Care, comments: “With rates of diabetes and obesity rising across many parts of Asia, we look forward to Risumalt helping to support growing regional demand for sugar-free, low-calorie foods and dietary supplements.”

Eilers spoke with FoodIngredientsFirst: “We see a strong demand for high-quality Isomalt produced in the South East Asian region for confectionery but also food applications like biscuits, moon cakes or instant powder beverages and effervescent tablets.”

“In Asia we observe an increasing health awareness, in general, resulting in a rising demand for low calorie/sugar-free nutrition,” explains Eilers. “In particular we see diabetes prevention gaining strong importance in Asia. Sugar reduced nutrition is important because: 1 of 3 adults over 18 are obese, 415 million adults worldwide suffer from diabetes and 90 percent of the affected have diabetes type 2 according to WHO, Global Report on Diabetes.”
 
“In Asia, the demand for sugar substitutes is rising steadily,” Eilers notes. “This is due in part to the strong growth in the population of overweight and diabetes, caused by increasing westernization of dietary habits as well as a higher genetic prevalence of type 2 diabetes. Almost every tenth Asian now suffers from this most common form of the disorder, >40 percent of the Chinese population is already pre-diabetic and current studies predict that the figure will almost double over the next 25 years. We see a strong demand for high-quality Isomalt produced in the South East Asian region for confectionery but also food applications like biscuits, moon cakes or instant powder beverages and effervescent tablets.” 

“Isomalt has a very pleasant taste but what we like most is that it can be processed just like sugar, yet offering only half of the calories,” adds Eilers.

Evonik commenced production of Risumalt for the Asian market earlier this year at a new facility in the Ratchaburi province (Thailand) close to Bangkok.  

In addition to Risumalt, Evonik will also be promoting a range of advanced health ingredients during Fi Asia, including its REXIVA brand of European-manufactured amino acids, the EUDRAGUARD portfolio of nutritional coatings and the anthocyanin-rich berry extract Healthberry.

By Elizabeth Green

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