Sweet Deal: Canadian Sugar Producer Partners With Israeli Food Tech Startup

Nov. 13, 2020

By JANICE ARNOLD

MONTREAL—Montreal-based sugar manufacturer Lantic Inc. has formed an exclusive partnership with an Israeli company to commercialize its technology that promises to substantially reduce sugar content in foods without sacrificing flavour.

Under the strategic collaboration with DouxMatok, Lantic will begin producing this modified cane sugar for the food industry in the United States in 2021.

According to an announcement, this all-natural product will have 30 to 50 percent less sugar content than regular cane sugar “without compromising taste, mouth feel or texture.” It can be used just like regular sugar, including in baking and making chocolate and other confectionery, the companies say.

“The patented technology works by maximizing the efficiency of sugar delivery to the sweet taste receptors, enhancing consumers’ perception of sweetness. This allows for considerable reduction in sugar content, while retaining the same taste consumers know and love,” stated a press release.

DouxMatok, based in Petach Tikvah, developed the technology over six years and holds 24 granted patents. It says its claims have been validated by numerous taste tests conducted among professionals and members of the public.

Lantic and DouxMatok have been working together for two years, piloting the product and scaling up Lantic’s capacity to manufacture it on an industrial scale at its refineries in Montreal and Vancouver. They have been consulting with selected food companies on developing new products using the sugar in, as well as reformulating existing goods.

Lantic’s parent is Rogers Sugar Inc., a publicly traded company and one of the largest sugar manufacturers in North America.

“We are extremely pleased to have secured an exclusive agreement with DouxMatok for this innovative technology that adds an important and much desired customer solution to our natural sweetener portfolio,” stated Lantic president and CEO John Holliday.

“In working with Lantic and its passionate entrepreneurial team, we are confident we have the right partner to take on the largest sugar market in the world,” stated DouxMatok CEO Eran Baniel.

“We are particularly excited about our part in helping make the food we love healthier, especially amid growing concerns around rising obesity.”

Baniel, an experienced entrepreneur, founded DouxMatok in 2014 with his father, Avraham Baniel, a legendary Israeli industrial chemist then well into his 90s, who is credited with inventing a process of stretching the sweetness of sugar back in the 1940s.

During the Second World War, sugar was rationed in British Mandate Palestine. A teacher asked Baniel, then a recent university graduate, if he could find a way to make a little of the stuff go further to satisfy her restless students’ cravings. He did so, experimenting in his kitchen.

Baniel would go on to become managing director of Israel’s national chemistry research and development centre for 30 years.