Morita signed license agreements with global companies for the patents for “Rebaudioside M”, the next generation stevia sweetener drawing attention worldwide
Morita Kagaku Kogyo Co., Ltd. (the Company) (CEO: Toyoshige Morita) -the pioneer of stevia sweeteners- is the first manufacturer in the world to develop and commercialize the plant-origin sweetener in 1971 in Japan. “Rebaudioside A”, which is widely used as the main component of stevia sweeteners in the world today, was a result of the development of the Morita variety stevia plant by the Company.
The Company has obtained the substance patents for 10 new steviol glycosides with superior tasting profiles, such as “Rebaudioside M”, in several countries including Japan, the United States, European countries, Korea, and Malaysia. Among those new sweetening components, especially “Rebaudioside M” has been drawing attention as the next generation stevia sweetener worldwide.
The Company had been in discussions for licensing those patents to expand the market of low calorie sweeteners and announced that it has signed license agreements with global leading companies in the sweetener industry in Europe and the United States.
The Company’s CEO Toyoshige Morita said: “With the recent boom in health consciousness, we see that the demand for low calorie sweeteners continues to increase. In order to meet this demand, we have decided not to monopolize our patents, and we have agreed with excellent companies in the US and Europe to grant our license. By signing license agreements with leading companies in all of the different fields of manufacturing stevia sweeteners, that is, natural, bioconversion, and fermentation, we are ready to provide consumers all around the world with safe and superior tasting stevia sweeteners containing “Rebaudioside M””.
Avansya (a joint venture between Cargill and DSM), Tate & Lyle, and Ingredion have started producing their products containing “Rebaudioside M”, and companies in the food and beverage industry are in the process of developing new products globally. Since the next generation stevia sweetener market is based on the license agreements between the Company and those licensees, this will be a hard blow to other unlicensed stevia manufacturers, such as Chinese companies.