Too Much Sugar?

June 22, 2012
Beverage Flavor Ingredients
The debate on High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) continues to rage. Some say it’s metabolized by the body differently than sucrose and is a major contributor to the obesity epidemic. Conversely, the Corn Refiners Association says that HFCS is no different nutritionally from sucrose, and petitioned the FDA to allow the use of “corn sugar” as the common name for HFCS, to help remove consumer confusion. The FDA responded with a resounding NO to the request! Click here to read about it in Ad Age.

Sugar in general is under much pressure. Supersized beverages are under intense scrutiny as America evaluates the impact that these mainstream and popular menu items have on our general health. Rising obesity rates heighten the concern that serving size is a key component that must be regulated to align with guidelines for nutritional balance.

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg recently made a motion to ban sales of sugary drinks in single servings greater than 16-ounces in restaurants, fast food establishments, street carts, movie theaters and stadiums. Bottled products in grocery and convenience stores would not be affected.

The proposal goes to the Board of Health on June 12th, and would affect the sale of sugar-sweetened sodas, teas, sports and energy drinks, and some juice and fruit beverages drinks that are over 16 ounces. Click here to read a New York Times article that outlines the proposal and details what could be sold and what would be outlawed.

With success in raising awareness of other social concerns such as smoking in bars and trans fats in restaurant foods, Mayor Bloomberg may have the groundswell support that can create a social campaign that spreads quickly across the country. We all should stay vigilant and watch for proposed changes to our own local legislation related to food and beverage portion sizes.