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High fructose corn syrup cannot be labeled as “corn sugar,” says FDA

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently denied a petition filed by the Corn Refiners Association to permit “corn sugar” as an alternate name for high fructose corn syrup, reports the LA Times.

The FDA defended its decision in a letter to the association, explaining that the term “corn sugar” has been applied to a different sugar, dextrose, for over 30 years. Because some people have an intolerance to fructose and use dextrose as a replacement, the FDA reasoned that switching the names might cause confusion and potentially harm those fructose intolerant individuals.

The agency also noted that consumers generally think of syrup as a liquid and sugar as a solid, and therefore calling high fructose corn syrup a sugar might be considered misleading.

In arguing for the more natural-sounding name, the Corn Refiners Association remarked that the public mistakenly assumes that high fructose corn syrup is a less healthy, more caloric alternative to other types of sugar. In reality, many nutritionists believe that the body does not metabolize high fructose corn syrup differently than other sweeteners.

Some in the food industry believe that only sucrose deserves to be called sugar, while others state that sucrose, glucose, fructose, lactose, maltose, mannitol, galactose, threose, ribose, deoxyribose, hamamelose, arabinose, sedoheptulose, and even high fructose corn syrup are all sugars.

“EMSL Analytical’s advanced food chemistry analytical laboratory provides a thorough sugar profile (fructose, sucrose, glucose, maltose, lactose, mannose, and others upon inquiry) for samples,” states Shannon Kauffman, EMSL’s Food Chemistry Lab Manager. “We also offer FDA-compliant nutritional labeling analysis, which includes the daily value (DV) and Recommended Daily Intake (RDI) when applicable.”

For more information about EMSL’s food testing division, please visit or, call 800-220-3675, or email

by S. C.
10 june 2012, World News > America