Functional Technologies Corp.

Functional Technologies Corp.

May 05, 2009 08:00 ET

Functional Technologies Corp. Reports Strong Commerical Wine Industry Interest in Use of Its Hydrogen Sulfide Preventing Yeasts

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - May 5, 2009) - Functional Technologies Corp. (the "Company") (TSX VENTURE:FEB) is pleased to report confirmed and growing interest from commercial wineries in the use of the Company's proprietary yeast that prevents the formation of hydrogen sulfide ("H2S") in fermentation.

The Company introduced its Phyterra Yeast brand, and its H2S preventative yeast technology, at the most recent American Society of Enology and Viticulture's annual Unified Symposium. During this introductory event more than 60 commercial wineries, from the USA alone, contacted Phyterra regarding the commercial availability of the H2S yeasts for the upcoming winemaking season. Additional commercial interest was generated at the subsequent Oregon Wine Industry Symposium where Dr. Linda Bisson, leading wine yeast expert at the University of California at Davis and the inventor of H2S prevention technology licensed by the Company, was invited to make a presentation of this proprietary technology. Expressions of interest in this H2S yeast solution have also been received from alcoholic beverage manufacturers other than from the table wine sector.

"We are delighted with the positive reception to the novel and preventative approach that our proprietary yeast platform offers the wine industry and the interest the Phyterra brand has generated. Winemakers are looking forward to the commercial availability of Phyterra products that help them effectively deal with the natural and unwanted occurrence of H2S and ethyl carbamate in their wine products", said Garth Greenham, Functional Technologies' President and COO. "Over a decade of research at UC Davis, and the wine industry's own funding support led by the American Vineyard Foundation, have gone into Dr Bisson's H2S breakthrough."

H2S is a well recognized, widespread and consistent problem in wine production. It occurs unpredictably as a distinctly unpleasant odor resembling rotten eggs - a quality defect that can render a wine product unsaleable if not treated. Current methods of resolution used by the wine industry are largely remedial in nature, implemented once a wine product has already been tainted. Such remediation processes may involve additional production steps that can negatively affect quality and costs.

"The unique benefit to winemakers from our Phyterra yeasts is that, by using our product during the fermentation to tackle the H2S problem, it is a preventative strategy - preventing H2S from occurring in the first place rather than attempting to remove it afterward. Our yeasts offer a way to simplify the winemaking process by reducing the need to otherwise remediate a tainted product after the fact." said Geoff Lee, V.P., Corporate Development . He added, "Introducing the H2S preventative yeast attribute, which can be utilized with any yeast strains, adds to our existing product portfolio of urea-degrading yeasts. The urea-degrading yeasts remove an important pre and post production precursor to prevent the formation of Ethyl Carbamate in wine and fermented beverages. Like the H2S preventative yeast, it can also be applied to any yeast strains, thus allowing for multiple benefits to both the producers of fermented beverages as well as the consumers. Offering a full range of favorite quality yeast strains with these important attributes will allow the wine and fermented beverage producers to make excellent choices for higher quality products."

About Functional Technologies Corp.

Functional Technologies is a functional foods and biological health products company that develops and commercializes advanced yeast products, and other novel biological products, for the food and the health care industries. The company is currently commercializing a platform yeast technology that substantially reduces the formation of ethyl carbamate (also known as urethane, which has been recently reclassified by the World Health Organization up to a Group 2A carcinogen - the same carcinogen class as lead, mercury, acrylamide and diesel exhaust), from wines and other widely consumed fermented beverages and foods. As part of its core focus of improving and enhancing the quality of the global food and beverage supply, Functional Technologies has recently expanded its yeast portfolio through the licensing of proprietary hydrogen sulfide (H2S) reducing technology from the University of California at Davis. H2S is one of the most common occurring sensory defects, and a widespread problem, in wine production. In addition Functional Technologies, through its wholly-owned subsidiary Phyterra Bio Inc., is developing a platform of proprietary biological products, for animal health, utilizing proprietary science in the field of micro-algae.

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This news release contains forward-looking statements as defined under applicable securities legislation. The forward-looking statements are made as of the date hereof, and the company has no intention to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise except as required by law. Such forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause the actual results, events or developments to be materially different from any future results, events or developments expressed or implied by such statements. Such factors include, among others, the company's stage of development, lack of product revenues and no assurance of product acceptance in the market, additional capital requirements, the ability to protect its intellectual property and dependence upon key personnel. These factors should be considered carefully and readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on such forward-looking statements. Additional risks and uncertainties relating to the company and its business can be found in the "Risks and Uncertainties" section of its most recent Management's Discussion & Analysis filed on SEDAR (

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