Your vegan blogger is dead serious today, on Day 5 of Vegetarian Awareness Month. I'm always dead serious, but usually have a twinkle in my eye, but aside from the silly corn graphic, not so much right now.
I've been reading pro-high-fructose corn syrup propaganda today on a site I use and generally respect and have no patience for it. Now, corn is vegan. That's awesome, and I love an ear of fresh picked corn steamed and slathered with Earth Balance and sprinkled with pepper as much as anyone. But when you fool around with the chemistry in a natural food to make a cheap sweetener that extends shelf-life and can be found in everything from corn flakes to tortilla chips, and practically everything else, I'm not thrilled. The Mayo Clinic gives a good explanation of the issue here.
See that commercial saying the government wants to tax your juice drinks and soda and to urge you to fight it?
How about the one showing a guy picking out the guy in an ear-of-corn suit when asked to pick which sweetener (HFCS, table sugar or honey) leads to the greatest weight gain in a line-up?
Just thought you ought to know that the Corn Refiners Association (with Cargill and Archer Daniels Midland-ADM its most well-known members) is behind this major pushback against HFCS criticism. The corn producers have really been hard at work to create the illusion of real science validating their product as healthful and "natural". The CRA weblink above features the annual report extolling their "multimedia campaign to correct the record on high fructose corn syrup and serves as a commemorative review of this extraordinary effort." They've got some of the best in the business in their defense of their lucrative product.
The line-up ad where the dufus consumer dude with apparently unjustified disdain for HFCS picks out the ear of corn and ignores the sugar cube and honey bear is brought to us by the Center for Consumer Freedom (CCF), a non-profit front run by Rick Berman a scandal-plagued lobbyist famous for supporting big tobacco, the booze industry, the safety of mercury in fish, and now high-fructose corn syrup. Here's a taste of his rhetoric from an article posted on the Convenience Store Decisions website:
"People have been spoon-fed misinformation about high fructose corn syrup," said Center for Consumer Freedom Executive Director Rick Berman. "We thought it was time someone explained, in no uncertain terms, that high fructose corn syrup has the exact same number of calories as table sugar and is handled the same way by the body. Any non-agenda driven nutrition expert will tell you the same."
The corn folks bring us SweetSurprise.com, where the "myths" of HFCS's obesity links are "exposed."
The CCF brings you such gems as these:
Judge for yourself. This health-conscious consumer is diligently working to make sure what goes in my body is good for me. Knowledge is power.