Just because you change the name of something doesn’t make it any better than it was. Well, the Corn Refiners Association would have you think otherwise with their petition to rebrand high fructose corn syrup as “corn sugar” on food packaging. Obviously, the best way to tackle a bad reputation is to simply rename your product!
Corn, corn, corn. We all know by now how subsidized the almighty American grain is, and that it’s found its way into hundreds upon hundreds of food products on grocery store shelves, mostly in the form of high fructose corn syrup, and largely for the worse of the health of the American people. Evidence has been piling up that high fructose corn syrup has adverse health effects (obesity, anyone?), and as a result sales have been steadily shrinking. So what do the corn refiners do? Well, change the name, of course.
Tom Laskawy at Grist sums up the move:
As long as government policy and industrial agricultural practices ensure a vast overproduction of cheap corn, food processors will continue finding creative ways (animal feed, vehicle fuel, wallboard) to use it all. The only option that remains is the last refuge of marketing scoundrels everywhere: deception.
For a good laugh, the official corn sugar website offers up some rather humorous “simple facts” about HFCS including:
- High fructose corn syrup is simply a kind of corn sugar that is handled by your body the same as sugar or honey.
- Regardless if it’s honey, cane sugar, high fructose corn syrup or just plain sugar, we metabolize it the same.
It’s too early to tell what will become of the petition, but we won’t be fooled…
Image credit: Flickr via Sasakei