Citizens for Health has filed a citizen’s petition with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requesting that the agency amend its high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS) regulations. The requested changes would require food producers (i) using HFCS, to identify its concentration of fructose on product labels (e.g., HFCS with 42 percent fructose would be labeled “high fructose corn syrup 42”), and (ii) manipulating the amount of fructose in HFCS “to a different concentration than a standardized blend of 42 or 55,” to also incorporate the concentration into the ingredient name (e.g., HFCS with 90 percent fructose would be labeled “high fructose corn syrup 90”).
Citizens for Health also asked that FDA initiate enforcement actions against food companies using HFCS with fructose in amounts other than 42 or 55 percent because these are the concentrations FDA has apparently designated as generally recognized as safe.
According to the petition, numerous online articles and reports demonstrate that HFCS 90 “is used in soft drinks (including reduced-calorie ones), salad dressings, jams, jellies, table syrups, wines, low-calorie frozen yogurts, desserts, and ‘light’ foods.” The petitioner, which describes itself as a natural-health advocacy non-profit, cites a 2010 study indicating that elevated fructose levels in sodas “are of particular concern because of the negative effects fructose has on the body,” that is, obesity and metabolic syndrome. Citizens for Health issued an alert on August 24, 2012, seeking public support for the petition and indicating that comments would be forwarded to FDA.