S&W Seed Company granted patent for stevia variety SW129 for commercial production market
−− New variety expected to feature higher leaf mass; increased Reb-A content
Sep. 14, 2017
This new stevia plant variety has been developed to address commercial processing markets in North America, South America, and other regions of the world where stevia is produced. In addition to increased leaf mass and Reb-A content, 'SW 129' also is designed to provide sweet leaves with high overall levels of steviol glycosides, excellent overwintering 20° F (-7° C), high plant vigor, and high leaf yield and to be late flowering. The Company believes that 'SW 129' may be ideally suited for commercial level stevia extraction due to these enhanced characteristics. Companies producing consumer food products, as well as ingredient manufacturers, are increasingly recognizing the value of stevia as an all-natural sweetener in beverage, dairy, baking and snack products.
Mark Wong, president and chief executive officer of S&W Seed Company commented, "S&W is developing a strong portfolio of patents within stevia. 'SW 129' exhibits higher leaf mass, increased Reb-A content, as well as other critical attributes that should allow it to be ideally suited for consumer food products. Our stevia development team has done an exceptional job developing varieties, and we intend to aggressively pursue commercialization opportunities for these varieties in the near future."
Stevia rebaudiana is a plant species in the sunflower (Asteraceae) family, which has naturally non-caloric sweet leaves. The active compounds that impart the sweet flavor to stevia leaves are steviol glycosides. The most common steviol glycosides are stevioside and rebaudioside A, which are reported to be between 200 and 400 times sweeter than table sugar. The development of new varieties of Stevia rebaudiana with higher levels of rebaudioside A than stevioside is desirable for use as a sugar substitute.
The Company's patent was issued on September 12, 2017, as U.S. Plant Patent PP28373. The term of an issued plant patent is the same as that of an issued utility patent, which is 20 years from the patent's filing date. Based on the filing date, the patent for 'SW 129' will expire on November 17, 2035.