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Low Cal Corn Sugar Catching On Fast
Best new use of the nation's corn crop, next to gasohol, may be fructose - a corn sugar with twice the sweetness of regular sugar but only half the calories.
"Fructose is what gives berries, fruits and vegetables their natural sweetness," says Evan Stadlman, promotional director for the Iowa Corn Promotion Board. The Board is promoting fructose, which only recently came on the market, among supermarket chains and also to consumers by offering free samples and recipe books. Food processors are also being urged to substitute the new sweetener for regular sugars.
Only the liquid form of fructose is now on the market. It's similar to honey in consistency but lighter, and derived from corn through a wet milling process. The process is compatible with making grain alcohol, which explains why Archer Daniels Midland Co., a major producer of fructose, has also developed into an early giant in alcohol fuel production.
Fructose can be used to sweeten any food or drink, substituting it at 1/2 to 2/3 the rate you use regular sugar. There are as many calories in a teaspoon of fructose as in a teaspoon of granulated sugar. However, since less of it will do the job, it cuts calories - a plus for dieters. In addition, it's completely natural with no additives, so health food lovers are stocking up.
And you might even call fructose an energy saver, since it normally cuts baking time of sweets by 10%.
Several major food chains are already selling fructose and report growing demand. It's commonly available in 24-oz. bottles for around $1.89, about half again as expensive as granulated sugar. Stadlman says a new plant now under construction will produce a granulated form of fructose which should increase demand.
"If just 5% of sugar consumers used fructose, demand for an additional 43 mil. bushels of corn would instantly be created," he says. Like alcohol production, the process has a hiprotein by-product. FARM SHOW Followup, Iowa Corn Promotion Board, 200 West Towers, 1200 35th Street, West Des Moines, Iowa 50265 (515 225-9242).

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1980 - Volume #4, Issue #2