INDIANAPOLIS, IN--(Marketwire -07/17/12)- Stevia Corp. (STEV) ("Stevia Corp." or the "Company"), a farm management company focused on the economic development of stevia, the fastest growing product in the alternative sweetener sector, is pleased to announce the signing on July 5th of several definitive agreements with technology partners Tech-New Bio-Technology ("TechNew") and their affiliates which resulted in technology and intellectual property transfers and the creation of Stevia Technew Limited, a Hong Kong-registered company.
The Stevia Technew Limited venture is 70% owned by Stevia Corp. with the remaining 30% held by TechNew. As part of the agreements, Stevia Technew Limited has further acquired from TechNew all current and future stevia formulation technologies, including eight formulations actively used in feed & fertilizer agriculture and aquaculture applications.
TechNew was founded by Mr. Zhang Ji (Jacky) in 2008 and currently services more than 200 aquaculture farms in China. Operations include facilitation of 225 acres of prawn farms and responsibility for 10,000 acres of mixed aquaculture in Guangdong Province. Mr. Zhang Ji is also the Vice Chairman of the Guangzhou Aquaculture Association and the Chairman of the Panyu Aquaculture Association (the largest member association in Guangzhou). He also manages 2,000 greenhouses in Shanghai and aims to work with his numerous business affiliations and personal relationships in an effort to increase visibility of Stevia Technew in order to aid the provision of technical advice and assistance for the Company's contract farming that utilizes stevia formulations.
As a result of the venture, Stevia Technew now exclusively provides 100% of the dry stevia plant product including all leaf and stem used in stevia formulations. These formulations not only provide a naturally enhanced sweetness, they are incorporated into fertilizers that address soil acidification, compaction and fertility decline caused by chemical fertilizer overuse; foliar fertilizers that help plants resist infection and disease; feed formulations for livestock, fish and shrimp that enhance digestion and help strengthen immunity; and microbiological preparations that address pollution in marine environments that negatively impact aquaculture activities.
George Blankenbaker, Stevia Corp. President, comments, "The signing of these agreements is a major milestone for our Company. We are now in a position to offer new stevia formulations and products that open up new markets to us including the $85 billion dollar Asian aquaculture market that is growing at double digits. The opportunities are immense and we are at the forefront of a high growth sector with the added benefit of working with Mr. Zhang Ji and his talented team. We are excited and thrilled by the prospects ahead."
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. For more information visit: www.steviacorp.us.
About Stevia Corp. (STEV)
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. For more information visit: www.steviacorp.us.
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. For more information visit: www.steviacorp.us.
Notice Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
This news release contains "forward-looking statements" as that term is defined in Section 27A of the United States Securities Act of 1933, as amended and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. Statements in this press release which are not purely historical are forward-looking statements and include any statements regarding beliefs, plans, expectations or intentions regarding the future. Such forward-looking statements include, among other things, uses and effects of stevia formulations, new stevia formulations and products, growth plans, business strategy, worldwide sales of stevia extract and sweetened products, growth of stevia leaf production and growth of the stevia global market. Actual results could differ from those projected in any forward-looking statements due to numerous factors. Such factors include, among others, the inherent uncertainties associated with new projects and development stage companies. These forward-looking statements are made as of the date of this news release, and we assume no obligation to update the forward-looking statements, or to update the reasons why actual results could differ from those projected in the forward-looking statements. Although we believe that any beliefs, plans, expectations and intentions contained in this press release are reasonable, there can be no assurance that any such beliefs, plans, expectations or intentions will prove to be accurate. Investors should consult all of the information set forth herein and should also refer to the risk factors disclosure outlined in our annual report on Form 10-K for the most recent fiscal year, our quarterly reports on Form 10-Q and other periodic reports filed from time-to-time with the Securities and Exchange Commission.