Honey truffle sweetener alternative on path to market

Tuesday, 23 April, 2024

Honey truffle sweetener alternative on path to market

Following the discovery of a sweet protein from honey truffles last year, MycoTechnology has made movements towards commercialisation, demonstrating the product’s potential as an alternative to sugar and existing sweeteners.

In less than a year since the discovery, the company has scaled production from the lab bench to 3000 L tanks, improving production process efficiency, optimising costs and validating safety and digestibility.

Recent safety evaluations, including genetic testing for toxicity, allergens and digestibility, have shown good results. The protein is not considered to be allergenic or toxic and is fully digestible by the human GI tract. Rather than being absorbed in its intact form, it breaks down completely into amino acids that are routinely found in other dietary protein sources such as meat, fish or eggs. In silico analysis also suggests that the molecule has no similarity to any other known protein structures and therefore has minimal potential for other secondary effects beyond sweetness.

Sweet proteins are offering non-nutritive alternatives to sugar and artificial sweeteners. The honey truffle sweetener is emerging as a clean-label addition to this category.

After isolating the protein responsible for the sweet taste, MycoTechnology used precision fermentation technology to produce the honey truffle sweetener with a potency ranging from 1000–2500 times sweeter than sucrose.

The company now continues to scale production and simplify processing in its facility.

Image credit: iStock.com/medlington1889

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