B.T. Sweets launches botanical sugar alternative

7 Dec 2021

The two-year-old startup B.T. Sweets is debuting Cambya, a plant-based, one-to-one sugar replacer made from soluble fibers, monk fruit, and select botanicals. Unlike other sugar substitutes, the company says that Cambya does not require any masking agents because it does not leave a bitter aftertaste.

As an alternative to table sugar, B.T. Sweets says its sweetener embodies the same textural properties as table sugar with zero added sucrose or artificial additives. Thanks to the plant-based soluble fibers that make up this sugar alternative, the company says it is an alternative that can be used in dry, wet-hot, and cold applications.

B.T. Sweets launches botanical sugar alternative

"We can say, quite literally, that Cambya's proof is in the pudding," asserts Dagi Pekatch, the company's founder and chairman. Cambya has been tested in applications such as ice cream and pudding, and several CPG brands are already line-testing the product, which is produced in Europe.

Sweetener alternatives are a booming business as more and more consumers search for alternatives to reduce their intake of sugar. According to the Innova Market Insights 2020 global Health and Nutrition Survey, cited by B.T. Sweets, 40% of consumers have decreased their sugar consumption. However, that does not mean that people are looking to eat fewer sweet treats.

At the same time that sugar is falling out of favor, sweetener alternatives have been rising concurrently with the reduction in sugar consumption, driving growth in the alternatives market, according to a recent USDA report. The global sugar-substitute market is projected to be worth $10.2 billion by 2026.

Sugar is a very versatile ingredient that provides sweetness and body but also helps with the texture, binding, color and shelf-life of products. Finding an alternative ingredient that is able to hit the sweet spot and deliver all of these qualities has not been easy for manufacturers. While a drop-in solution such as Cambya is proposing is the ideal, many other companies have struggled to deliver this efficacy.

From DouxMatok to The Supplant Company to Cumberland Packing Corp.’s All-Purpose In The Raw sweetener, the sweetener alternative market is not short on options. But these options often come with trade-offs in flavor and texture that not all consumers are willing to make. A 2018 Ipsos survey found that 70% of shoppers are concerned about their sweetener intake levels and still find sugar to have a highly desirable taste.

If Cambya can tackle both taste and health concerns as well as serve as a one-to-one sugar substitute for manufacturers, the company may just be able to help consumers have their cake and eat it too.

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