- PepsiCo Inc. confirmed that it will be rolling out limited quantities of its stevia-sweetened product, Pepsi True, to stores in Denver, Minneapolis, and Washington, according to The Wall Street Journal.
- Last October, the company introduced Pepsi True, which offers reduced calories while using stevia, a natural sweetener, instead of controversial artificial sweeteners, and sold it on Amazon.
- Coca-Cola Co. beat PepsiCo to the punch, having already released its stevia product, Coca-Cola Life, to the nationwide market in November after pre-launching in a few U.S. stores last August.
As artificial sweeteners like aspartame and sucralose are causing controversy among health professionals and food advocates, stevia has risen as a natural, zero-calorie alternative sweetener for use in diet-friendly drinks. However, because stevia can have a bitter flavor, both Coca-Cola and PepsiCo have had to tweak their recipes to include a balance of both stevia and cane sugar, which is still a healthier alternative to the traditional high fructose corn syrup normally used in soda.