SAN DIEGO (AP) — Food flavoring company Senomyx Inc. has signed a preliminary agreement with Coca-Cola Co. to continue working with the soft drink maker to develop sweeteners.
Senomyx said the agreement — called a term sheet — includes key commercial and financial terms to potentially continue and expand its research efforts to find new flavor ingredients with its sweet taste technology.
The companies, which have been working together on nonalcoholic beverages since 2002, have agreed to negotiate the terms of the deal in the next 60 days.
Soft drink makers like Coca-Cola are trying to find new ways to reduce calories or switch to noncaloric or low-calorie sweeteners in their drinks, without sacrificing taste.
Senomyx has received a Generally Recognized As Safe (GRAS) designation for a table sugar enhancer, known as S6973, which will allow it to be used in food and beverage products.
The company has said the new product cuts as much as half of the sugar in certain products while still retaining a natural sugar taste.
Shares of Senomyx rose 60 cents, or 17 percent, in afternoon trading Monday to $4.09. Shares of Coca-Cola fell 2 cents to $53.86.