Sunday, September 19, 2010

Mmmm.... Sugar....

If you've been looking to reduce your intake of high-fructose corn syrup- a food ingredient widely thought to be leading the charge of What's Making America Fat- I've got good news and bad news.

The good news: you'll be seeing a lot less of it.
The bad news: that's because its name is being changed to 'corn sugar'.

I'm not sure how many people it's going to fool. Historically, changing the name of a product or organization that's had image problems tends to work, but usually the name change is total. Halliburton becomes XE. Philip Morris becomes Altria.

The word 'corn' is still in the name, and it's probably the biggest keyword in 'high fructose corn syrup'. If a consumer is looking for 'high fructose corn syrup', and they instead see 'corn sugar', the word 'corn' is still there, ringing a bell. You're not looking for 'fructose'. You're not looking for 'syrup'. You're looking for 'corn'. (If you're looking for 'high', that's another type of product entirely.)

Some probably are going to get fooled. Never underestimate the stupidity of the public. But it's not going to be nearly as many people as would get taken in had the corn industry somehow managed to get the word 'corn' taken out.

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