Looking for a way to make chocolate even healthier? Barry Callebaut, the world’s largest cocoa and chocolate processing company, has come up with yet another option for chocolate and food manufacturers.

The Switzerland-based company will launch a dark chocolate made with stevia extract in the North, Central and South American markets, the company says.

The chocolate will be sweetened with an all-natural extract from the stevia plant, which alone offers zero calories per serving, iinstead of sugar.

In developing the new chocolate, Barry Callebaut replaced sugar with an all-natural sweetener solution comprised of dietary fibers; the natural sugar alcohol erythritol; and the stevia extract.

The new product contains no artificial sweeteners and does not produce a laxative effect when consumed. It also offers the same great taste, texture and aroma as fine, traditional chocolate, the company claims.

Barry Callebaut is the first manufacturer to offer a stevia-based chocolate for all chocolate and food manufacturers in the region.

“With obesity and obesity-related illnesses on the rise in the Americas, food manufacturers are continually evaluating the sugar and sweetener levels in their finished products in order to meet consumer demand for healthier options,” says Laura Bergan, marketing manager for Barry Callebaut North America’s food manufacturing division. “Barry Callebaut’s unique sweetening solution is based on a blend of ingredients from a natural source, offering the perfect balance of indulgence and nutrition.”

The product can be used in a variety of applications, including moulding, enrobing and inclusions, or customized for a specific application to provide chocolate and food manufacturers a one-of-a-kind chocolate solution.

For more information about Barry Callebaut’s dark chocolate sweetened with stevia or other chocolate products, visit http://www.barry-callebaut.com/.