ASR Group and Bonumose Inc. announced that tagatose production has commenced at Bonumose’s new commercial production facility and advanced research and development lab. Having developed a proprietary method for producing low-cost tagatose from plant-based starches, Bonumose is at the forefront of using enzymatic processes to make rare sugars at scale, the companies stated.

Starting in mid-February, ASR Group will have tagatose available for initial shipments and samples.

A rare sugar that occurs naturally in a variety of foods including fruits and dairy products, tagatose works similarly to sucrose in many applications, is 90% as sweet and has 60% fewer calories. It also offers a number of other advantages as a sweetener. It has a low GI of 3, and it is Ketogenic Certified. Additionally, studies show tagatose to have prebiotic effects, and it recently achieved Non-GMO Project Verified status.

American Sugar Refining, Inc., a member of ASR Group, is among the investors that helped Bonumose achieve tagatose commercial production. ASR Group is also Bonumose's exclusive distribution partner in the United States, Canada, Mexico, and Western Europe. ASR Group’s research and testing of tagatose in formulations indicate that it performs well across a variety of food and beverage categories.  

"Because of the compelling functional and nutritional properties of tagatose, we are seeing strong market interest across a wide variety of food and beverage companies,” said Jim Kappas, ASR Group's Vice President of Specialty Ingredients. “For this reason, Bonumose is fast-tracking plans for a second, larger plant."