High Fructose Corn Syrup
Researchers have linked high fructose corn syrup to obesity, especially in children, and to a wide range of health disorders. They contend that high fructose corn syrup has no nutritional value, does not satisfy hunger, and may prompt the body to crave more sweets. Other researchers indicate that it is the total amount of sugar, rather than high fructose corn syrup itself, that is the problem. Although overall sugar intakes should be controlled, high fructose corn syrup is singled out because of environmental and societal concerns in addition to health concerns.
High fructose corn syrup has become popular as a sweetener in products such as soft drinks, condiments, and baked goods mostly because it is less expensive than other sweeteners. The low cost, and consequent overuse, is a result of a system of subsidies that keep the price of corn artificially low to the benefit of large food manufacturers.
According to a New York Times article by Michael Pollan, the subsidy-driven production of 80 million acres of corn is doing serious and lasting damage to our environment. “Modern corn hybrids are the greediest of plants,” writes Pollan, “demanding more nitrogen fertilizer than any other crop. Corn requires more pesticide than any other food crop. Runoff from these chemicals finds its way into the groundwater and, in the Midwestern Corn Belt, into the Mississippi River, which carries it to the Gulf of Mexico, where it has already killed off marine life in a 12,000-square-mile area.”
“To produce the chemicals we apply to our cornfields takes vast amounts of oil and natural gas. (Nitrogen fertilizer is made from natural gas, pesticides from oil.) America’s corn crop might look like a sustainable, solar-powered system for producing food, but it is actually a huge, inefficient, polluting machine that guzzles fossil fuel—a half a gallon of it for every bushel.”
Moreover, HFCS is likely to be derived from genetically-modified corn, yet another consumer health and ecological concern.
You can now shop at Weaver Street Market and be assured that you will find our shelves stocked with yummy foods without trans fats and high fructose corn syrup.