Wednesday, September 15

A Rose By Any Other Name

Think Progress has an interesting post up about the corn industry's current attempt to petition the FDA to relabel high fructose corn syrup as 'corn sugar.' This, no doubt, is in response to the current campaign to educate consumers about the hazards of corn syrup. Consumption of corn syrup is at a 20 year low, and instead of confronting the negative press, the industry is trying to avoid it all together.

Obviously I oppose such a measure, but I wonder if this is as terrible as some are projecting. The name change will still have the word 'corn' in the title, and in the internet age, the attention given to the name change will go a long way to counteracting the corn industry's goals. Another consideration is that this is an ingredient, not a free-standing product. I wonder if a consumer savvy enough to read through the long list of ingredients to find 'high fructose corn syrup' would be tricked by this name change.

To me its a good sign that people are becoming more aware of what is in their food. I actually welcome this move, as well as the fight that will result. Its a teaching moment, and I doubt it will do more than spread word on the issue.

And I really don't think that the Obama FDA, with its focus on fighting obesity, would approve this petition.

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