CULVER CITY (CBS) — A company headquartered in Culver City has released the first zero-calorie soda sweetened entirely by stevia, a natural plant-based product.

Zevia CEO Paddy Spence says his company is changing the soda paradigm. He launched the brand to give consumers who want or need to avoid sugar, such as diabetes patients, a safe alternative to artificial sweeteners.

“As a product that has zero calories, zero sugar and no impact on blood glucose levels, Zevia can fulfill that desire we all have for sweet beverages, without the health downside,” says Spence.

Spence, who cut out sugar 12 years ago, is a former executive at Kashi and Nature’s Gate. He says along with contributing jobs to the local economy, Zevia is helping lead a “healthy food renaissance” in Los Angeles.

Zevia is currently available in 15 flavor varieties, including a caffeine-free version, at Whole Foods, Target and Kroger locations.

The company will be presenting three new varieties — strawberry, lime cola, and cherry cola — in Anaheim this weekend at the Natural Products Expo West.

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