New Ads Say Corn Syrup's OK in Moderation
There's something crude and flippant about these new ads by the Corn Refiner's Association, which have begun advertising to undo all the bad PR surrounding high fructose corn syrup.
In one spot, a mother casually accuses another of not caring what her kids eat; in another, an uptight boyfriend insinuates his girlfriend doesn't love him because she's offered him an artificially sweetened Popsicle.
Both the girlfriend and the accused mom get the last word in the end. Turns out the corn syrup Nazis don't know why it's bad, and are apparently only following an invisible crowd of lemmings informed by, who knows, the nasty nasty liberal media.
Each spot ends with "You're in for a sweet surprise!" and guides users to SweetSurprise.com, which sports a gigantic, disarmingly fresh ear of (as-yet-unrefined?) corn.
The spots have already generated moody debate on YouTube, but their real targets are housewives, in some ways the most influential force in the fight against high fructose corn syrup -- which, sure, may be fine in moderation. The problem is, it's in just about everything: most snack foods, ready-made baked goods, drinks, ice cream, some condiments, and even bread.
At least one woman has been incensed enough to write an indignant letter to the Corn Refiner's Association. Her view is below:
Dear Corn Refiners Association representative:
I'm really surprised that you're actually advertising on television and on your sweetsurprise.com web microsite that high fructose corn syrup is healthy. My understanding is that it's processed multiple times and is from genetically altered corn.
When tested on rats, it ruins livers and there are so many more clinical results out there, that I'm actually pretty much insulted that your tv ad doesn't answer any of those questions, but just shrugs at them. Then again, maybe you couldn't answer the questions without lying, so all you could do is shrug your shoulders.
That's just how it came across. Yes, you said it was ok in moderation, and it got me to the sweetsurprise website, but as an average person on the street, it was borderline offensive. I'm an average person on the street and I've lost trust in the Corn Refiners Association. To me, this is an advertising campaign gone bad.
Well, the Corn Refiner's Association was a funny place to put your trust in the first place, given that it formally represents refined corn products. If it didn't try refining (heh) the image of HFCS, it would be out of a job.