GLG Life Tech Corporation ("GLG" or the "Company"), the vertically integrated leader in the agricultural and industrial development of high quality stevia extracts, is pleased to announce the approval in France of Rebaudioside A stevia extract for use in food and beverages. The French Government's approval was made after a review of the safety of Rebaudioside A by the Agence Francaise de Securite Sanitaire des Aliment (AFFSA) was first published in June 2009. This approval is the first for a European Union market and allows the food and beverage industry to sweeten products with rebiana, high purity Rebaudioside A, for the next two years.
High purity Rebaudioside A 97%, or rebiana, also received GRAS status in the United States in December of 2008 following a positive approval issued by the World Health Organization and extensive research submitted to the FDA to confirm its safety. Subsequently, products have been launched in the U.S. and have given consumers products which are naturally sweetened while simultaneously offering zero or reduced calories. The Company expects that products sweetened with rebiana will be launched in France in the near future based on discussions that it has held with potential customers and from other recent market announcements.
Chairman and CEO, Dr. Luke Zhang, states, "We are pleased with the approval of rebiana in France and view it as another positive step towards global market acceptance for stevia extracts as the next generation sweetener. We have already been working with customers in R&D and product formulation in preparation of this approval. As a leading supplier of the world's purest stevia extracts, we are prepared to meet the demands of the European market and are pleased with the decision of the French ministry to permit its use in food and beverages."
About GLG Life Tech Corporation
GLG Life Tech Corporation is a global leader in the supply of high purity stevia, an all natural, zero-calorie sweetener used in food and beverages. The Company's operations cover each step in the stevia supply chain including non-GMO stevia seed breeding, natural propagation, stevia leaf growth and harvest, proprietary extraction and refining, marketing and distribution of finished product. GLG advanced technology and extraction technique make it one of the world's leading producers of high purity stevia extracts, including rebiana 97% Rebaudioside A. The Company has operations in Canada as well as agricultural and processing facilities in China in the provinces of Anhui, Jiangsu, Shandong and Heilongjiang. China is responsible for an estimated 85% of the world's current stevia production. GLG stevia processing capabilities include 41,000 metric tons of raw stevia leaf and 1,000 metric tons of high grade stevia extract. The Company holds a strategic alliance and supplier agreement with Cargill, Incorporated to supply 80% of its global stevia extract demand and 100% of any stevia sourced from China. In addition, the Company's global sales and marketing arm, GLG-Weider Sweet Naturals, works with companies around the world to bring stevia extract supply solutions for food, beverage, pharmaceutical and nutraceutical applications.
Forward-looking statements: Forward-looking statements: Certain statements in this press release constitute "forward-looking statements". Such forward-looking statements include, without limitation, statements evaluating the market for stevia, statements predicting the Company's future financial performance, the Company's production capacity, demand for stevia and the Company's stevia based products and general economic conditions. Forward-looking statements involve various risks and uncertainties. There can be no assurance that such statements will prove to be accurate, and actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from the Company's expectations include operational risks, the effects of general economic conditions, changing foreign exchange rates and actions by government authorities, uncertainties associated with legal proceedings and negotiations, industry supply levels, competitive pricing pressures and other risks and uncertainties disclosed under the heading "Risk Factors" in our Annual Information Form in respect of our year-ended December 31, 2008 and the risk factors in our Management's Discussion and Analysis ("MD&A") for the year ended December 31, 2008 and for the interim period ending June 30, 2009, all of which are available on SEDAR at www.sedar.com. The Company's forward-looking statements reflect the beliefs, opinions and projections on the date the statements are made. The Company assumes no obligation to update forward-looking information should circumstances or management's estimates or opinions change, except as required by law. Financial outlook information contained in this press release about prospective results of operations, capital expenditures or financial position is based on assumptions about future events, including economic conditions and proposed courses of action, based on management's assessment of the relevant information as of the date hereof. Such financial outlook information should not be used for purposes other than those for which it is disclosed herein.