PureCircle Announces Major Commitment to the Next Generation of Stevia Varieties

OAK BROOK, Ill., April 26 /PRNewswire/ — PureCircle, the world’s leading producer and marketer of stevia-based, all-natural, zero-calorie sweeteners, and Michigan State University (MSU), one of the world’s premier horticultural research institutions, have signed an agreement for research and breeding of the stevia plant.

The agreement brings MSU’s highly technical staff and resources of the Department of Horticulture to bear on stevia rebaudiana. The plant, native to Paraguay, has been known for centuries as ‘Sweet Leaf’ by the Guarani Indians who use it as a sweetener. Today, it is being used increasingly as a natural sweetener in products from the world’s leading food and beverage manufacturers.

The goal of the research is to accelerate the creation of proprietary varieties of stevia that contain dramatically higher levels of sweetness in the leaf as well as other improved agricultural properties. PureCircle has pioneered the large scale production of Rebaudioside A (Reb A). This new research and varietal development are focused on the next generation of steviol glycosides beyond Reb A. The joint breeding efforts will leverage the most modern science for natural, conventional plant breeding.

Magomet Malsagov, CEO of PureCircle, stated “The incorporation of MSU’s leading edge research combined with PureCircle’s industry leading, proprietary varieties will ensure that we continue to lead the industry with sustainable agriculture while improving the economics for both farmers and our customers. The results will aid in PureCircle’s continued worldwide expansion of Reb A volumes as well as increase our leadership in the next generation of steviol glycoside sweeteners.”

MSU’s Dr. Ryan Warner, lead researcher on the project, noted, “We are excited to partner with an industry leading company like PureCircle to bring our cutting edge knowledge and experience in horticultural plant breeding and genetics to this exciting new crop. This is a great example of combining the strengths of industry and academia to bring value to consumers.”

The advancements made in stevia will be applied around the world as PureCircle continues to provide all-natural, zero-calorie sweeteners to the leading Food and Beverage companies.

About PureCircle

PureCircle is a pioneer in the extraction of natural goodness from plants and a leading global producer of natural high-intensity sweeteners, including high-purity Rebaudioside A (Reb A). The company has a vertically integrated supply chain operating in three continents. Activities range from breeding of proprietary stevia varieties, sourcing of dry stevia leaves and extraction, and purification of extracts into sweetening ingredients to the marketing of these ingredients to food and beverage manufacturers worldwide. PureCircle is listed on the London Stock Exchange AIM market with the ticker symbol: LSE.PURE. For more information, visit www.purecircle.com.