LONDON – The Supplant Co. has introduced Supplant sugars from fiber, a new blend of sugars found naturally in plant fiber that have been shown to lower calories in foods. Supplant sugars also are “upcycled” ingredients in that the London-based company uses a patented method that upcycles agricultural side streams such as straw, stalks and cobs of corn, wheat and rice to make the sugars.
Supplant sweeteners caramelize, bake and cook like traditional sugar, according to the company. Since it is made from fiber, Supplant offers certain benefits. It is 1.8 calories per gram compared to sugar at 4 calories per gram, said Tom Simmons, PhD, chief executive officer and founder of The Supplant Co. Supplant’s glycemic index is less than 15% of glucose, which has a glycemic index of 100, he added, and Supplant is a prebiotic.
“Supplant sugars from fiber is used for roughly gram-per-gram replacement of cane sugar in food products, providing bulking, texture, structure, browning, as well as sweetening,” Dr. Simmons said. “It is not a high-intensity sweetener.”
Supplant sugars will be priced competitively with conventional sugar once they are manufactured at full industrial scale, he said. The sugars from fiber have been shown to work in various categories, including baked foods, cereal, chocolate and ice cream, he said.
“We are focusing solely on food products, not beverages, as this is where we see the greatest unmet need,” Dr. Simmons said.
Supplant sugars have completely replaced traditional sugar in most categories although at 100% replacement the products are less sweet.
“Different partners are pursuing sugar reduction at different levels, depending on strategic goals,” he said.
The Supplant Co. has achieved self-affirmed Generally Recognized as Safe status for the sugars and will pursue a “no questions” letter from the US Food and Drug Administration. The sugars from fiber currently are available in powder form, but the company is working on other formulations. The fiber-derived sugars are labeled as added sugar.
The company currently sources the straw, stalk and cobs of corn in France and Italy.
“In the future, we expect manufacturing in the US and thus are likely to use US, as well as European, foodstocks,” Dr. Simmons said.
Dr. Simmons received a PhD in plant science from the University of Edinburgh in Scotland. Before starting The Supplant Co. in 2017, he was a postdoctoral research scientist and Fellow in the Biochemistry Department of the University of Cambridge. He specialized in research into plant sugars and fibers.
Supplant is featuring the sweeteners in desserts developed by Thomas Keller, a chef who offered ice cream at his The French Laundry restaurant in Yountville, Calif., and at his Per Se restaurant in New York. Packaged shortbread cookies also were available for purchase at Bouchon Bakery in Yountville.
"Nutrition is always at the forefront of what we do, being able to add nutritional impact to our foods, and therefore to our bodies,” Mr. Keller said. “Supplant sugars from fiber is yet another prime example that prioritizes this, as well as emphasizes sustainability, innovation and health."