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CBS News Health Report

Breakthrough CBS News Health Report: “High Fructose Corn Syrup – It’s Just Sugar”
Leading Food Expert: Alleged effects from high fructose corn syrup “an urban myth”

Watch the full report below.

March 11, 2010

CONTACT: Audrae Erickson, President
(202) 331-1634

Washington, DC – Last night, CBS Evening News with Katie Couric ran a report, “Is high fructose corn syrup really so bad?” prepared by CBS News Correspondent Michelle Miller. In the report, Ms. Miller noted, “High fructose corn syrup is just sugar with an image problem.” (

In commenting on the CBS story, Audrae Erickson, president, Corn Refiners Association concluded, “This CBS Evening News story corrects the record on an important health and nutrition matter for American consumers. There is no nutritional difference between high fructose corn syrup and sugar. A sugar is a sugar whether it comes from cane, corn, or beets.”

Michael F. Jacobson, Ph.D., Executive Director, Center for Science in the Public Interest, stated in the CBS report, “The evilness of high fructose corn syrup has become an urban myth.” Referring to researchers who alleged a difference between it and table sugar, Jacobson stated, “They did not have one shred of evidence to back up their theory.”

“CBS got to the essence of the matter.” said Erickson. “Consumers are being misled into thinking there is something uniquely different between a natural sweetener made from corn, high fructose corn syrup, and its close substitute, table sugar. This American-made ingredient maintains freshness in condiments, enhances fruit flavors in yogurts and spice flavors in sauces, retains moisture in baked goods and keeps ingredients evenly mixed in salad dressings. It has contributed to food choice and value for decades. In this economy, every little bit helps.”

In 2008, the American Medical Association said, “After studying current research, the American Medical Association concluded that high fructose syrup does not appear to contribute more to obesity than other caloric sweeteners…” (American Medical Association. June 17, 2008. Press Release: AMA finds high fructose syrup unlikely to be more harmful to health than other caloric sweeteners

Additionally, the American Dietetic Association (ADA) concluded that “Both sweeteners contain the same number of calories (4 per gram) and consist of about equal parts of fructose and glucose. Once absorbed into the blood stream, the two sweeteners are indistinguishable.” (Hot Topics, “High Fructose Corn Syrup.” December 2008.

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CRA is the national trade association representing the corn refining (wet milling) industry of the United States. CRA and its predecessors have served this important segment of American agribusiness since 1913. Corn refiners manufacture sweeteners, ethanol, starch, bioproducts, corn oil, and feed products from corn components such as starch, oil, protein, and fiber.

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