Andy Morton

Stevia - a bitter pill for sugar?

By: Andy Morton - 14 March 2013 15:01

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There's an interesting article on sugar prices in this week's New York magazine that will no doubt raise the ire of soft drinks executives. 

It claims that despite massive government subsidies - and a recent big harvest - the US sugar industry is keeping prices artificially high. 

But while the writer calls for an Occupy Sugar protest, the US drinks companies paying through the nose for sugar may have another answer. More stevia-based beverages are coming down the pipe each week, from PepsiCo's Trop50 range to The Coca-Cola Co's revamped Sprite, and the natural extract, which is 30 times sweeter than sugar, could insulate firms from the sugar industry. 

As I wrote this year, stevia growers are already benefiting from an increase in interest in the plant. 

Of course, who's to say that a few years down the line we won't need protecting from the all-powerful stevia lobby, who's huge profits have won it the ear of Washington and the patronage of the president? 

Remember, you heard it here first - Occupy Stevia!

 

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