"However, reformulating products to contain stevia is not simple," warns Henry Hussell, head of marketing for Cargill Sweeteners in Europe.
The international food manufacturer has developed a low-calorie chocolate cream dessert using Truvia stevia leaf extract, C.Maltidex maltitol and Cargill Cocoa & Chocolate Gerkens cocoa powders.
In creating this prototype the chocolate used was important in terms of taste (mild with low bitterness) and the level of fat. "It was vital to get the level of fat and sugar correct to ensure the desired mouthfeel and texture," say Hussell.
The firm has also developed a 'quark'-type raspberry flavoured fromage frais aimed at children, to provide them with dairy goodness but with less sugar and a 30% reduction in calories.
"Reformulating a children's teatime treat with a minimum of 30% calorie reduction, while still delivering the great taste was a demanding task," says Hussell. "The fat content was very low, at 0.1%, so it was important to use texturisers in the fruit purée to ensure good mouthfeel."
"Our supply chain for Truvia stevia leaf extract has been under development for the past seven years. It is fully traceable, as we oversee the product from field to table and have a clear vision of sustainability."