Monday, March 15, 2010

Major Brands No Longer Sweet on High-Fructose Corn Syrup

Gatorade, Wheat Thins Among Products Ditching HFCS for Sugar

Bowing to consumer demands, major brands are removing high-fructose corn syrup from some of their products in favor of sugar. Few, however, are shouting it from the rooftops as it would cast a shadow on those products that still contain HFCS.

Hunt's ketchup, Gatorade and Wheat Thins are all permanently ditching corn syrup for sugar. Heinz has created a sugar-sweetened version of its iconic ketchup, while Pepsi and Mtn Dew launched limited-time, sugar-sweetened versions of their colas. But with all of these reformulations, only Pepsi and Mtn Dew have made any noise to date.

"We know moms don't like it, and they don't want to feed it to their kids," said supermarket expert Phil Lempert, who has pushed for HFCS removal for a decade. "As a result, the brands that lead the pack to get rid of it, they're going to see an uptick in sales." He added that the sugar shift is an easier one for consumers than say fat-free cheese. Most consumers either don't notice a taste difference or prefer the sugar version.

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