Wilderness Family Naturals' agave is not a purified substance, such as high fructose corn syrup or white sugar. Our agave is non-GMO and it is certified organic.
Agave Nectar is a sweet concentrated syrup made from the Agave plant. It is made by harvesting the "pina" which is a "pineapple-like" core from which all the leaves originate. The "pina" is stripped of its leaves, washed and then chopped into small pieces and soaked in purified water. After a thorough soaking, the fibers are removed and sent to make cloth and rope. The water that remains is full of inulin, a complex carbohydrate that is often used as a pre-biotic by the natural foods industry. This inulin water is allowed to incubate at 103 degrees for 4-5 days. Natural enzymes, which occur in the plant, break down the complex carbohydrates into two monosaccharides (simple sugars: fructose and glucose). No enzymes are added. No chemicals are used and no further processing is done. The inulin water is simply allowed to incubate at a steady temperature the same as if you were making yogurt. The last step in the process, concentration of the nectar, occurs solely by the use of a vacuum to remove excess moisture (water).
Wilderness Family Naturals' Certified Organic Agave Nectar is not heated during processing and it is considered raw. By contrast, Agave Nectar made by other manufacturers, is created using temperatures of 160-170 degrees F and the total manufacturing time is about 36 hours. Standard agave nectar is usually filtered heavily to yield a very light colored product with a mild taste. The lighter the color, the more the agave has been filtered. A manufacturer who claims to have raw, light colored agave is selling an agave that has been filtered many, many times to remove the participated substances which form during fermentation.
Wilderness Family Natural's Organic Agave Nectar is dark in color because it has the least amount of processing of any Agave product. Lighter Agave Syrups can be produced by faster processing (which requires temperatures of 160 degrees or more) and heavy filtering. Raw agave, sold by other suppliers, if light in color has been filtered many, many times. Repeated filtering removes flavor and color.
When we visited the manufacturing plant in Mexico we were offered 5 different "shades" of agave to choose from. Each sample had a slightly different taste with the strongest flavors coming from the darkest agave. The difference in the shades came solely from the number of times the agave was filtered and the fineness of those filters. Wilderness Family Naturals' has chosen to purchase only the agave which sees the lowest temperatures and the least amount of filtering. That is why our agave is darker than others.
Wilderness Family Naturals' Organic Agave Nectar is dark in color because it has fermented naturally at low temperatures over many days and it is not heavily filtered. When we visited the plant where our agave is manufactured we had the option of 5 different "shades" of agave. Each different agave sample had a slightly different taste. The strongest taste came with the darkest colors and this was the agave that was the least filtered and the least processed. This is the agave that Wilderness Family Naturals chose to purchase.
Before visiting the plant ourselves, this type of information was unknown to us. However, we were able to monitor the process, ask numerous questions, and check quality control records, process logs, and look over the equipment. We are proud to tell you that our agave is coming from a new, state-of-the-art plant with very tight quality control. And we can give you our personal guarantee that our agave is raw and not heavily filtered or processed with added enzymes, chemicals or other materials. It is:
- Completely natural - no chemicals or enzymes are added during processing, only natural fermentation and simple filtration.
- Completely raw - no heat is used during processing.
- Great for baking and cooking as well as raw dishes and has been used this way for thousands of years by the Mexican people.
- Does not contain any chemicals, toxins, or preservatives.
- 75% sweeter than sugar. Fructose is 42 percent sweeter to the human brain than granulated sugar, less is needed to achieve the same level of sweetness.