April 29th, 2011
Big Sugar Sues Big Corn Over "Corn Sugar" Ad Campaign For HFCS
Last year, the Corn Refiners Association began a campaign to rebrand controversial sweetener high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) as “corn sugar.” Well that has managed to rankle the folks behind non-corn sugar, who say it is false advertising and have now taken their complaint to a U.S. District Court.
The suit, filed by Western Sugar Cooperative, Michigan Sugar Company and C & H Sugar Company, Inc., names such agribusiness biggies as Archer Daniels Midland, Cargill, Tate & Lyle and the aforementioned Corn Refiners Association as defendants. It claims that the “corn sugar” campaign attempts to steer consumers away from concerns regarding HFCS by equating it with sugar.
“This suit is about false advertising, pure and simple,” sayeth the President and CEO of Western Sugar Cooperative. “If consumers are concerned about your product, then you should improve it or explain its benefits, not try to deceive people about its name or distort scientific facts.”
According to a statement from the sugar group, the corn club started this rebranding effort only after an increase in consumer demand for food and beverages made with sugar led to a decline in HFCS sales.