Stevia Corp.'s contracted grower in Vietnam commences first stevia harvests of 2012 as part of 100 hectare commercial trial
March 27, 2012
– Stevia Corp., a farm management company focused on the economic development of stevia, the fastest growing product in the alternative sweetener sector, is pleased to advise that its contracted grower in Vietnam has commenced the first field harvests of 2012 as part of their 100 hectare (250 acres) commercial trial commitment.
The initial trial fields are located in North Central, Vietnam near Vinh City and harvest activities were observed by the local government and media including a regional television news crew. These fields are only a small part of a broad network of trial fields located across several provinces and it is too early to come to any conclusions, but farmers were pleased with the first yield which also easily met company expectations. The results were especially gratifying after an unseasonably long and low temperature winter period that delayed the start of spring growth. Further harvests will be conducted over the ensuing weeks and months and comprehensive data will be gathered over the course of the year.
George Blankenbaker, Stevia Corp. President, comments, "It has been a long road to get to this point and it is exciting and inspiring to see the level of local interest and enthusiasm from the communities involved in the progress. From our perspective, the work is ongoing as we need to verify the economics of the stevia plant on a large scale over the span of an entire year and it is much too early to say that we have succeeded in Vietnam, but it is a very encouraging start."
Further details of the Company's business, finances, appointments and agreements can be found as part of the Company's continuous public disclosure as a reporting issuer under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission's ("SEC") EDGAR database.
About Stevia Corp. STEV +3.90% Stevia Corp. is a farm management company focused on best practice agronomic competency in order to deliver high value stevia through proprietary plant breeding, excellent agricultural methodologies and innovative post-harvest techniques. To date, the Company has acquired two grower supply contracts and three nursery fields in Vietnam.
About the Stevia Industry Sector Within two years of the USA market opening, Nielsen-based retail consumption data indicated almost $1 billion of retail sales for the sector. In 2010, stevia products were launched across thirty-five countries and in 38 categories. Zenith International estimates worldwide sales of stevia extract reached 3,500 tons in 2010 with an overall market value of $285 million and forecasts the global market for stevia will reach 11,000 tons by 2014 requiring the tripling of stevia leaf production at the farm level to keep pace with consumer demand.