something that sweetens, as sugar or a low-calorie synthetic product used instead of sugar.
an added inducement: such sweeteners as tax breaks and low-cost loans.

1640–50; sweeten + -er1

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World English Dictionary
sweetener (ˈswiːtənə)
1.  a sweetening agent, esp one that does not contain sugar
2.  informal a bribe
3.  informal a financial inducement

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Encyclopedia Britannica


any of various natural and artificial substances that provide a sweet taste in food and beverages. In addition to their sweetening power, they may be used for such processes as food preservation, fermentation (in brewing and wine making), baking (where they contribute to texture, tenderization, and leavening), and food browning and carmelization. Natural sweeteners may be both nutritive and flavorable and thus popular both as food and flavouring. However, because common sugar and other nutritive sweeteners such as honey and corn syrup are associated with health problems (such as obesity and tooth decay) or are even a threat to life (for diabetics), there have been efforts since the 19th century to produce nonnutritive sweeteners that are not subject to metabolism and contain little or no caloric value. Nonnutritive sweeteners, which may be either artificial (synthetic) or derived from plants, include such compounds as saccharin, aspartame, cyclamates, and thaumatin.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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Example sentences
As an alternative sweetener for the meringues, we're going to try seeping
  stevia leaves in water to make a simple syrup.
It does this because the sweetener xylitol has been added to the soles.
Corn is used as inexpensive feed to fatten cows in feedlots and to make a cheap
  sweetener called high-fructose corn syrup.
Besides, the term corn sugar is already taken by dextrose, another corn
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