Has Stevia been approved by FDA to be used as a sweetener?
The plant commonly known as Stevia contains steviol glycosides, which are used as sweeteners. If food ingredients, such as sweeteners, are generally recognized as safe (“GRAS”), they do not require FDA approval as a food additive. Based on its review of information and data submitted by industry in GRAS notices submitted to FDA, FDA has not questioned the GRAS status of certain high-purity steviol glycosides for use in food. These high-purity steviol glycosides may be lawfully marketed and added to food products sold in the United States. However, stevia leaf and crude stevia extracts are not considered GRAS and do not have FDA approval for use in food.
For more information on Stevia, see High-Intensity Sweeteners.