US consumers are confused by the term high fructose corn syrup, the CRA claims

US consumers are confused by the term high fructose corn syrup, the CRA claims

US trade body the Corn Refiners Association has petitioned Food and Drug Administration (FDA) over the term 'high fructose corn syrup'.

The organisation said yesterday (14 September) that it has asked the FDA to allow manufacturers the option of using ‘corn sugar’ as an alternative name for the product. The CFA believes the original term is confusing to consumers, who may think that high fructose corn syrup is high in fructose, when “it is roughly half glucose and half fructose and is metabolised by the body in the same way as regular table sugar”.

“Consumers need to know what is in their foods and where their foods come from and we want to be clear with them,” said CRA president Audrae Erickson. “The term ‘corn sugar’ succinctly and accurately describes what this natural ingredient is and where it comes from.”

The organisation cited a December 2008 report by the American Dietetic Association, which concluded that high fructose corn syrup is “nutritionally equivalent to sucrose (table sugar)” and that the sweeteners contain the same number of calories per gram. The ADA also found that “once absorbed into the bloodstream, the two sweeteners are indistinguishable”.

The CRA claimed that “a continuing series of inexact scientific reports and inaccurate media accounts about high fructose corn syrup and matters of health and nutrition” have also increased consumer uncertainty.

“We hope that the FDA will act positively on our petition in the interest of consumer clarity,” said Erickson.