Vancouver, British Columbia, Dec. 15, 2014 – GLG Life Tech Corporation (TSX: GLG) (“GLG” or the “Company”) announces today another major agricultural breakthrough. Through its non-GMO 2014 agricultural program, GLG has developed a new stevia seedling variety that is expected to decrease the cost of producing high-purity Rebaudioside A (“Reb A” or “RA”) stevia extracts by 50% to 60%. Dubbed the “Super RA” or “SRA” variety, this strain contains double the amount of Total Steviol Glycosides (“TSG”) and nearly triple the amount of Reb A glycosides than contained in conventional stevia leaf on the market today
With such a huge increase in Reb A glycoside content, producing one ton of either intermediate or highpurity extract will require far less stevia leaf – the predominant cost factor – than is presently required. Other costs of production will also be reduced correspondingly. In sum, compared to the overall costs of producing Reb A extracts using today’s conventional stevia seedlings, GLG expects costs for the production of Reb A extracts to be cut by more than half.
Laboratory results have confirmed GLG’s initial findings regarding leaf content. The SRA leaf contains 21% TSG, which is double today’s average leaf content of 10%-11% TSG. It is this dramatic jump in TSG content that is the primary factor in the tripling of Reb A content. Additionally, the percentage of TSG that comprises Reb A is 76%, compared to an average value today of about 50%. On a dry weight basis, this means that Reb A is present in the SRA leaf at levels of about 16% (relative to total leaf weight), compared to less than 6% for conventional leaf. Furthermore, the SRA variety derives from GLG’s Huinong line of stevia plants, which, in addition to producing high-Reb A and high-TSG, also carries traits of high leaf or biomass yield (typically 30%-40% bigger than conventional plants) and high disease resistance.
Such leaf, so rich in Reb A, is truly the first of its kind; moreover, this announcement comes on the heels of GLG’s news release last week regarding its new Reb C seedling. That seedling, also a first, contains some 600% more Reb C than conventional stevia seedlings. Like the SRA seedling, GLG expects this new Reb C seedling to be have a substantial impact on the stevia market. GLG expects to implement both the new SRA and Reb C seedlings in a limited capacity in 2015. GLG looks forward to full-scale commercial implementation of both beginning in 2016.
The Company is in the process of filing for patent protection for its SRA seedling. The seedling’s development was overseen by the GLG agriculture team through its wholly owned Chinese subsidiary – Anhui Bengbu HN Stevia High Tech Development Co. Ltd. – an institution at the forefront of stevia agronomics. Dr. Luke Zhang, CEO and Chairman of GLG, had this to say: “With these stunning developments, it is safe to say that GLG’s agricultural program is having an extraordinary year. We do not plan to stop there, however, as we continue our efforts towards making similar leaps and bounds with our Reb D and Reb M seedling varieties.”
In addition to having patented stevia agriculture and technology, GLG leads the way when it comes to stevia in the Food and Drug Administration’s (“FDA”) Generally Recognized as Safe (“GRAS”) program. It has already received three letters of no objection for various Reb A stevia products, including Reb A extracts with purities greater than 95% and 97% and products with TSG greater than 95% that have Reb A as the primary glycoside. GLG has also received a letter of no objection for its high-purity Rebaudioside M extracts. It currently awaits word from the FDA on its GRAS filings for high-purity Rebaudioside C and high-purity Rebaudioside D extracts. GLG remains committed to ensuring that all of its naturally sourced sweetener products are compliant with the GRAS program.
For further information, please contact:
Simon Springett, Investor Relations
Phone: +1 (604) 669-2602 ext. 101
Fax: +1 (604) 662-8858
Email: [email protected]
About GLG Life Tech Corporations
GLG Life Tech Corporation is a global leader in the supply of high-purity stevia extracts, an all-natural zero-calorie
sweetener used in food and beverages. GLG’s vertically integrated 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 the finished product. GLG has similarly positioned itself,
through parallel vertically integrated Luo Han Guo operations, to be a leader in the supply of high-purity Luo Han
Guo extracts. Additionally, to further meet the varied needs of the food and beverage industry, GLG has launched
its Naturals+ product line, enabling it to supply a host of complementary ingredients reliably sourced through its
R8 supplier network in China. For further information, please visit www.glglifetech.com
Forward-looking statements: This press release may contain certain information that may constitute “forward-looking statements” and “forward looking information” (collectively, “forward-looking statements”) within the meaning of applicable securities laws. Often, but not always, forward-looking statements can be identified by the use of words such as “plans”, “expects” or “does not expect”, “is expected”, “budget”, “scheduled”, “estimates”, “forecasts”, “intends”, “anticipates” or “does not anticipate”, or “believes” or variations of such words and phrases or words and phrases that state or indicate that certain actions, events or results “may”, “could”, “would”, “might” or “will” be taken, occur or be achieved.
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