One Sweet Change
See how impactful one sweet change can truly be.
The SweetLeaf video, One Sweet Change, was the Platinum Winner of a 2018 AVA Digital Award for the best web-based production, short-form web video, the Platinum Winner of a 2018 Hermes Creative Award, and the Marcom Gold Winner for 2018. Directed by our advertising agency, McFadden/Gavender.
The only stevia brand to be named a Top Wellness Company, and to win 36 international awards for taste, innovation, and sustainability, SweetLeaf Stevia Sweetener and SweetLeaf Organic Stevia Sweetener packets have received the prestigious ChefsBest® Excellence Award. The packets have also officially been designated as Certified Paleo from The Paleo Foundation, Inc., making SweetLeaf Stevia the only stevia on the market to receive this certification. SweetLeaf’s awards total more than all other low-calorie or no-calorie companies combined.
Wisdom Natural Brands®
What happens when a man of modern healthcare meets the holistic healing wisdom of an ancient people? In the case of James A. May, a former healthcare executive, the meeting forever changed his life—both personally and professionally. Mr. May founded Wisdom Natural Brands®, parent company of SweetLeaf Stevia Sweetener and Wisdom of the Ancients® herbal teas.
Wisdom Natural Brands (WNB) is a leading U.S. manufacturer of stevia and offers a full line of SweetLeaf Stevia Sweetener products, available in convenient single-serving packets, liquids, powder, tabs, and concentrate, including the best-selling SweetLeaf Stevia and Organic Stevia Sweeteners, SweetLeaf® Sweet Drops™ Liquid Stevia, and SweetLeaf Water Drops™. WNB has introduced millions of people to the great-tasting, better-for-you sweetness of stevia.
Wisdom of the Ancients is one of the most respected herbal tea lines in the natural industry. Wisdom of the Ancients was the original company brand which started nearly 35 years ago, when Mr. May first started selling herbal teas from the trunk of his car. Quite an amazing business growth since then!
Our Sweet Story
SweetLeaf was launched in 1981 when my late husband, James A. May Sr., was introduced to the stevia leaf in Paraguay and began to dream of a world where sugar could be naturally replaced. This was no small dream, but like all dreamers Jim believed anything was possible. Looking back now, I realize he was right.
Jim was working in healthcare and I was home with our five young children when the stevia leaf called Jim to a greater mission in life. A Peace Corps worker who just returned from Paraguay persuaded Jim to taste a stevia leaf and enjoy its sweet, delicate taste. It was that moment when our lives and destiny were changed forever.
We believed so much in this small sweet leaf, that we sold all our worldly belongings, except our home and one car, and tucked away a very small amount of money to barely sustain our family. Friends and family thought we were crazy! Thinking back, it sounds so impulsive now, but my husband was persuasive and he truly believed this leaf could change people’s lives for the better. We didn’t have any income for three years. That’s right. Zero. It was risky, but we believed we were meant to introduce the world to this sweet herb which has so many incredible benefits to the human body.
In the ‘80s, Americans were searching for a safe alternative to sugar. Both Jim and I became true believers in this critical need. We knew stevia was a better alternative to diets high in sugars and artificial sweeteners—and it simply tasted great! We began working to create a formula which could be used as an alternative, but wanted to make sure it contained no artificial ingredients. This was no easy task.
Whoever said patience is a virtue was right. It has been a road filled with many twists and turns. We started by packaging and labeling the herbs in our garage with the help of our young children. Our son Michael, now the President of our company, remembers those days well. Jim persuaded local health food stores to carry our new stevia products by taking stevia, yerba maté, and other herbs to stores and distributors in the back of our car.
Later, the FDA wanted to ban stevia from coming into the U.S. It was as if all the walls were closing in and this dream of Jim’s was turning into more of a nightmare. Still, we kept putting one foot forward and with the help of our congressional delegates, we were the first company to earn the FDA GRAS (Generally Recognized as Safe) designation in 2008. This made our product a food which could be called a sweetener in the United States, rather than a dietary supplement. It was exactly what we needed and we celebrated by working harder and continuing to grow. Today, you will see sweetener product aisles in natural and mainstream grocery stores worldwide carrying our products. I still walk by when shopping and smile thinking of the path it took to get here.
The past few years have marked a major shift in attitudes toward added sugars and how they impact the health of Americans. The American Heart Association, USDA, FDA, and the World Health Organization recommend reductions in the amount of added sugars consumed by the average person. These efforts highlight the connection between dietary choices and chronic disorders, including diabetes, obesity, and cardiovascular disease. There have been thousands of papers written about the safety and benefits of stevia and there are millions of users who experience the health-promoting benefits everyday.
Our dream of making the world a sweeter place has become a reality. We cherish our relationship with you. We cherish our relationships with doctors and other healthcare professionals providing a better solution to their patients for reducing added sugars in their diets. Our 35-year journey reminds me very much of the Robert Frost poem, The Road Not Taken. “Two roads diverged in a wood and I took the one less traveled by, And that has made all the difference.” We are grateful and ever so thankful to all of our customers for journeying with us on a road that will continue to make a meaningful difference in the lives of countless people seeking a better-for-you answer to harmful excess sugars while maintaining a heightened quality of life.
Carol May, CEO
Our Commitment to You
SweetLeaf’s commitment to you has been the same since the company began in 1982. We believe in quality products. Period. That is our promise to you, our customer, and to the world in which we live. We are committed to supporting health-promoting lifestyles for people everywhere.
Our commitment means that no artificial sweeteners will be in our products. It also means a commitment to manufacturing products with no added or hidden dietary sugars. Our products have only the finest plant-based ingredients, with certified organic stevia used in every product. Our products are non-GMO, gluten-free, and they do not spike blood sugar. You will also notice our flavors have no colors. They are natural blends of fruits and vegetables. SweetLeaf can be used by anyone hoping to replace sugars with a zero-calorie, delicious, natural alternative, including those with diabetes and special nutritional and dietary needs.
We are honored to have won 31 awards for taste and innovation. SweetLeaf gives your family a better-for-you product that simply tastes great. A winning combination for everyone.
Our company is very proud to be the only food product allowed to participate as an exhibitor at the American Heart Association’s international convention and the American College of Cardiology’s international symposium with many of the world’s finest cardiologists. This is particularly noteworthy since the American Heart Association, FDA, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture recently reported that added sugars in foods and beverages have grown to epidemic proportions. With the continued demand for a better-for-you, health-promoting, no artificial sweetener, SweetLeaf Stevia remains the most sought after brand by people looking to reduce dietary sugars in their foods and beverages.
From our humble beginning more than three decades ago, launching and introducing stevia in the U.S., to being honored for visionary leadership and lifetime achievements, and being inducted into the Natural Products Industry Hall of Legends, our company continues to lead the industry while staying true to our original commitment of making the world a sweeter place by developing products which change lives for the better. Your kind words about how our brand continues to change your life and the lives of those you love, keeps our passion and drive going. We are driven to continually develop new products to add to the SweetLeaf family to give everyone options which allow better-for-you choices for yourself and your family.
“We love your product! I have a little boy who has sucrose and fructose malabsorption, and stevia is the only sweetener we can use.”
“I am so thankful for the hard work you do to produce delicious and calorie-free stevia. I need to eat basically sugar free due to health reasons, and I was going crazy for even a little sweetness added back to my life, especially in my daily cup of coffee.”
“We are so happy with your product. After thorough research, we found SweetLeaf is the only product that has no dextrose or maltodextrose. Thank you for caring so much.”