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Frequently Asked Questions

Everyday Wholesome Sweeteners receives numerous questions about our products. We have compiled a list of our most Frequently Asked Questions. Just type a keyword in the search field and a list of possible answers will pop right up.

Of course if you need additional information, please contact our Customer Service team through the website by clicking here.  Customer Service can also be reach by phone at 1-800-680-1896.  Our lines are open Monday-Friday from 8:00 AM to 6:00 PM CST. 

FAQs
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Q: How is Organic Blue Agave Syrup made?
A: 

Blue agave succulent plants shape the native landscape, adding color and character to thousands of acres of Jalisco's subtropical region. Blue agave (Agave tequilana var. Weber), a member of the Agavaceae family (cousin to Joshua trees and yucca plants), is a slow-growing plant that spreads runners from a "mother" plant. The runners are then harvested and replanted; some are cultivated for blue agave nectar (or tequila), while others become new mother plants. Grown to USDA Organic Standards, the agave is cultivated and processed without chemicals or genetic modification.

After growing for 5 to 7 years, a mature blue agave plant stands 6 to 8 feet tall and its "sugar" is at its peak. The blue agave's treasure is held in the piña or core of the plant. It is called a  piña because it resembles a pineapple after the leaves have been trimmed away. Wax in the blue agave's long leaves gives the species its bluish color. 

Farmers hand-cut the blue agave with a simple razor-sharp blade. (A skilled farmer can cut and trim a 100- pound blue agave piña in less than 5 minutes.) The field trimmings are left behind to restore the soil and reduce erosion. The fibrous blue agave piñas are then taken to the mill where it is pressed and its inulin-rich juice is collected and cleaned. 

Agave's natural inulin, a dietary fiber made up of complex carbohydrates, is not sweet by nature. Heating (or hydrolyzing) the inulin transforms it into sweet nectar. When making the Light Blue Agave nectar, the juice is heated to 161ºF (72ºC).  However, when making the Raw Blue Agave nectar, the process is lower and much slower: the juice is warmed slowly and the low heat is maintained for nearly twice as long. In this simple process, the inulin becomes fructose, a slowly metabolizing simple sugar found in many fruits and vegetables.

When agave piñas are crushed, the collected liquid oxidizes (much in the same way an apple turns brown when exposed to air). Filtering determines the blue agave nectar's flavor and color. According to Wholesome Sweeteners' preferences, the Light Blue Agave is simply more filtered than its Raw-Amber counterpart.  Light Blue Agave enhances food's natural flavors while Raw Blue Agave imparts a rich, subtly complex sweetness. Whether Light or Raw, the end result is the same: a sweet, low glycemic organic nectar that's perfect for baking, beverages, fresh fruit and table top use.

 The simple organic process at the mill:

Milling and juicing: the Blue Agave piñas are crushed and milled; all of the raw juices are collected in tanks and the rest of the piñas' fibers are recycled.

Filtering: The blue agave juices are filtered through carbon-activated filters.

Hydrolysis: In this stage, the inulin in the agave juice is gently heated to convert it into sweet agave syrup.

2nd Filtering: For food safety, the agave nectar is filtered a second time.

Evaporation: The organic blue agave juices are thickened slowly by evaporation at a tepid temperature.


Q: Is organic agave similar to high fructose corn syrup?
A: No, there are numerous differences between the sweeteners and how they are made.  For a detailed explanation, please see our Agave Facts vs. Fiction page.

Q: Is Wholesome Sweeteners Organic Stevia Kosher?
A: Yes. Wholesome Sweeteners Organic Stevia is Kosher Certified by the Orthodox Union. It is also USDA Organically Certified, Non-GMO Project Verified, Gluten-free and Vegan.

Q: Does Wholesome Sweeteners Organic Stevia have a bitter aftertaste?
A: In blind taste tests, Wholesome Sweeteners Organic Stevia proved to be, hands down, the best tasting stevia of all the products on the market. Our Organic Stevia locks in the sweetness and eliminates the bitter aftertaste found in many other Stevia products.

Q: Is Wholesome Sweeteners Organic Stevia approved by the FDA as a sweetener?
A: The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) cleared Stevia for distribution as a food sweetener in the United States in 2008. Wholesome Sweeteners Organic Stevia is Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS approved) by the FDA.

Q: Is Wholesome Sweeteners Organic Stevia safe for diabetics?
A: We recommend that anyone with a serious health condition consult with their healthcare professional before using any sweetener. Wholesome Sweeteners Organic Stevia has a 0 glycemic index and does not affect blood glucose levels.

Q: How is Organic Stevia zero calories if you add inulin?
A: Technically, Agave Inulin does have a caloric value, as it is a dietary fiber and as such, our bodies can't metabolize it. It passes through our stomach and into our large intestine. The Inulin has the added benefit of acting as a prebiotic in the intestine.

Q: How is Wholesome Sweeteners Organic Stevia processed?
A: Wholesome Sweeteners Organic Stevia is an enzymatically enhanced full spectrum Stevia leaf extract. We intentionally utilize the full spectrum extraction of sweetness from the whole stevia leaf in order to retain the micronutrient properties of stevia. Extracting only the Reb-A eliminates all of the other herbal benefits stevia can provide. Our Organic Stevia is a full-spectrum extraction of the whole leaf, not just another Reb A-type stevia product, which means the micronutrients found in the Dulcosides or Reb-D remain. Reb-D, which contains the micronutrients and the bitter note, is removed from many other Stevia products. The natural process used in the production of Wholesome Sweeteners Organic Stevia improves the stevia's flavor, eliminating the bitter note common in many stevia products.

Q: How do you store Wholesome Sweeteners Organic Stevia? What is its shelf life?
A: Store Wholesome Sweeteners Organic Stevia it in a cool, dry and dark environment preferably in a tightly sealed container. If stored properly our Wholesome Sweeteners has a 3-year shelf life. Although, it tastes so good we doubt it will last that long!

Q: Does Wholesome Sweeteners Organic Stevia come in a liquid form?
A: No, not at this time.
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