Higher Juice raises $8M to chop sugar in orange juice

Dive Transient:

  • Sugar discount expertise startup Higher Juice raised $8 million in a funding spherical led by iAngels, in response to a press launch emailed to Meals Dive. 

  • Higher Juice has developed an enzymatic expertise that converts fructose, glucose and sucrose into prebiotic dietary fibers and different non-digestible molecules. The method helps cut back as much as 80% of all sugar. The non-GMO expertise is at present aimed toward orange juice. The corporate opened a pilot plant in January 2021 and can use the discovering to assemble its first full-scale manufacturing plant in Israel.

  • Practically half of shoppers are aiming to cut back their sugar consumption, however style stays an essential precedence for a lot of of them. Many shoppers have chosen to restrict their total consumption as an alternative of choosing merchandise that include synthetic sweeteners, forcing meals producers to discover new choices like pure and novel elements.

Dive Perception:

Sugar performs a wide range of essential capabilities in meals formulations past including sweetness together with texture, colour and shelf life. Eradicating sugar from a recipe or attempting to swap it for an alternate has posed severe challenges for meals producers. Whereas some companies are turning to pure sweeteners like stevia and monk fruit to chop energy, pure choices usually go away a pesky aftertaste and have a tendency to extend manufacturing prices.

In response to the rising alternative, a brand new class of startups like Higher Juice has emerged round sugar discount expertise. Israeli startup DouxMatok’s first product diminished as much as 40% of the sugar content material in meals and baked items whereas nonetheless delivering the identical quantity of the candy taste. 

Legacy gamers are also engaged on sugar options, together with Nestlé, which​ created a “hole sugar” that causes an individual to understand the identical stage of sweetness however eat much less of the favored ingredient. Kerry Style and Diet has developed TasteSense, a pure flavoring answer designed to convey again sweetness that is misplaced when sugar is diminished.

Ocean Spray is partnering with Amai Proteins on a cranberry juice that has at the least 40% much less sugar utilizing the startup’s designer candy protein, whereas Kraft Heinz’s funding arm led a $6.9 million funding for Joywell, which makes use of fermentation applied sciences to create plant-based candy proteins.

Higher Juice is hoping to face out from the competitors by concentrating on current sugars in orange juice. The fruit juice class has confronted intense competitors as shoppers more and more view it as a high-sugar choice alongside soda. A wide range of beverage makers resembling PepsiCo with Tropicana and Coca-Cola by its Minute Maid model have launched low-sugar styles of juice to fulfill shoppers’ preferences.

Modifying the present sugars in orange juice won’t solely allow producers to lower sugar content material, however assist them higher align their merchandise with shoppers’ rising demand for clear label elements. It additionally could make clear current label confusion round sugar. Label confusion has posed challenges for beverage producers providing reformulated variations and result in an rising class of drinks known as juice waters like PepsiCo’s Frutly and Nestlé Pure Life Fruity Water

Most mother and father of younger youngsters can’t determine key elements in youngsters’s drinks after reviewing the packaging, Diet Information and the elements checklist, according to analysis launched earlier this yr. This contains the presence of added sugars, no- and low-calorie sweeteners and the proportion of juice. 

Higher Juice could also be at a drawback by focusing completely on orange juice in comparison with different firms providing elements or applied sciences that may be utilized to a wide range of meals and drinks. The upstart could must develop its providing to different drinks so as to seize extra curiosity from juice makers.

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