If you want to spot high fructose corn syrup on food labels, just look for the following code words. In addition to “corn syrup,” HFCS (high fructose corn syrup) you might find names like these…
- Maize syrup
- Glucose syrup
- Glucose/fructose syrup
- Tapioca syrup
- Dahlia syrup
- Fruit fructose
- Crystalline fructose
In Canada, they call it “glucose-fructose.” And in Europe, it’s “isoglucose.” If the label doesn’t say “sugar” or “cane sugar,” you can be pretty sure it’s some form of HFCS.
There are High fructose corn syrup is not a single product. It consists of a group of three different liquid sweeteners that all come from maize or corn. The most widely used one is HFCS-55 which is used to sweeten drinks.
The two main types are:
This is mostly used in beverages like soft drinks, fruit drinks, iced teas, energy drinks and cordials. It contains on average 55 per cent fructose with the rest being 45 per cent glucose plus a smattering of glucose double units such as maltose and glucose triple units. The higher the fructose, the sweeter the syrup, so this one is preferred by the soft drink companies. Currently it’s used in 93 per cent of soft drinks in the US where it’s cheaper than sugar.
This is used in many baked goods, canned fruits, jams, jellies, and dairy products. It contains on average 42 per cent fructose and 58 per cent glucose.
In addition, small quantities of HFCS 90 (90 per cent fructose) are also produced for ‘specialty applications’ such as canned fruits, confectionery and dessert syrups, and for re-blending with lower fructose syrups.