June 27, 2014. A number of calorie free sweeteners are available in the market. Erythritol is one of them. According to a news item by the Vienna University of Technology (VUT), the university has developed a method to produce erythritol from ordinary straw through genetically modifying the fungus Trichoderma reesei. Previously, the method applied to obtain the sweetener was cumbersome. The technique resulted in further improvement in obtaining the sweetener in that the GM fungus can be directly applied to the straw to obtain erythritol and secondly, the GM version of the fungus can produce the sweetener on a commercial scale.