CHICAGO — PureCircle has received a letter of no objection from the Food and Drug Administration for the use of Rebaudioside M as a general purpose sweetener for foods and beverages in the United States, the company said Dec. 30. Reb M (also known as Reb X) has a closer taste to table sugar than previous stevia ingredients, which allows for deeper calorie reductions in food and beverage products, according to PureCircle.

A joint development and five-year supply agreement between PureCircle, which has a U.S. office in Chicago, and The Coca-Cola Co., Atlanta, led to the discovery and development of Reb M.

“Ongoing investment in supply chain assets and leaf development are in place to support the commercialization of Reb M,” said Jason Hecker, vice-president, global marketing and innovation for PureCircle.