Friday, September 24, 2010

A Better Name for Bad?

Readers beware! The rebranding of high fructose corn syrup is underway. The name supported by the corn industry is "corn sugar." Firstly, when the people who have the most to gain support something it could be hint of something less than objective. I can't find where a new name is necessary, in the first place. I think the renaming campaign is all about a new way to confuse consumers. Cynical? Perhaps.

Let's presume king corn won't get their desired name, so now what? The NY Times blog yesterday asked for help with a new name. They asked some food experts who suggested:

  • Corn Glucose an Fructose Syrup (Marion Nestle)
  • Enzymatically Altered Corn Glucose (Michael Pollan)
  • Glucose-Fructose Corn Sweetener (Michael Jacobson)
  • Corn Sugar (Barry Popkin)
  • High Fructose Corn Syrup (Dr. Andrew Weil)
If you'd like to, you can suggest your own name and vote on the five choices using the blog link above. From this list, I like Michael Pollan's suggestion of EACG mostly because "enzymatically altered" simply sounds like something bad for you. And, I think we should simply require the label to say BAD. Anything processed or altered should be identified on the label by the three letters B-A-D. Realistically, it doesn't much matter what the substance comes from because few processed ingredients resemble their natural beginnings. And, BAD is very easy for consumers to understand. How powerful would it be if our food labels said (from our initial Manwich blog):

Tomato Puree (Water, Tomato Paste), BAD, Distilled Vinegar, BAD, Less than 2% of: BAD, BAD, Dehydrated Onions, Dehydrated Red and Green Bell Peppers, Chile Pepper, Tomato Fiber, BAD, BAD, BAD, Dehydrated Garlic, BAD, BAD.

Now that would be a pretty clear label. 

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