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Market for Sugar Substitutes Driven By Rising Prevalence of Sugar Related Health Problems

With the worldwide prevalence of diabetes and obesity on the rise, sugar substitutes are gaining recognition and popularity for their ability to live a healthier life while still allowing us to enjoy the food and drinks we like to have. The total number of cases of diabetes and obesity are estimated to be over 450 million and 620 million respectively, a huge rise from the 108 and 300 million in 1980. The prevalence of diabetes has been rapidly rising in middle and low income countries. Most of the world’s population live in countries where overweight and obesity kills more people than underweight. Fast paced lifestyles and long working hours have left people with almost no time to devote to exercise. Using sugar substitutes seems to be the best way for people to prevent such diseases.

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The sugar substitute market consists of both natural sweeteners as well as artificial sugar substitutes. High Intensity sweeteners are an important subclass of sugar substitutes. They also account for the highest market share in the global sugar substitutes market. These compounds have many times the sweetness of table sugar(sucrose), so much less of it is needed and the number of calories becomes negligible.

Sugar substitutes have a number of advantages apart from having a very low calorific value. They do not raise blood glucose levels, hence being safe for diabetic people or people at a risk of developing diabetes. Unlike sugar, artificial sweeteners do not contribute to tooth decay. They are also used as a middle ground in weight loss programs while people change their eating habits. Later they will be able to slowly wean off of consuming both sugar and artificial sweeteners. Improving food appearance, color, taste, and texture are just a few of the many benefits of artificial sweeteners.

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Currently seven intensely sweet sugar substitutes have been approved for use in the US. Among them the most commonly used ones are saccharin, aspartame, and sucralose. The food and beverages industry is using more and more artificial sweeteners instead of the conventional corn syrup or sugar. Aspartame is the most popular in the food industry especially after the prices dropped after the patent expiration in 1992. Sucralose may however dominate in a couple of years as alternative unpatented methods of production of sucralose may soon emerge and this will cause the price of sucralose to drop by more than 30 percent, according to Morgan Stanley.

The global sugar substitutes market is valuated at USD 13.55 Billion and is expected to rise to USD 17.17 Billion at a CAGR of 4.85% by 2021, according to Market Data Forecast’s research report. The most popular products in which sugar substitutes are being used are Diet sodas, dietary foods, cereals, and sugar-free deserts. Increasing prevalence of health related problems due to sugar consumption, awareness and preference for low calorie substitutes, increase in population and disposable income are some of the major drivers of the global sugar substitutes market.

The major manufacturers of sugar substitutes are

  • Cargill Incorporated,
  • Tate & Lyle PLC,
  • Roquette Freres S.A,
  • Purecircle Ltd.,
  • Archer Daniels Midland Company,
  • Ajinomoto Co. Inc.
  • and JK Sucralose Incorporation.

The prevalence of obesity in the US has been a major problem for a while now. Many Americans have now started using artificial sweeteners instead. More than 138.25 million Americans use artificial sweeteners. The market for growth in developing countries is expected to grow rapidly as well. For more information on the global sugar substitutes market visit us at

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