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February 12, 2009

Mercury in High Fructose Corn Syrup

On January 27, 2009, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reported on a study conducted by the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy (IATP). It tested popular processed foods and found mercury present in foods with high fructose corn syrup. The original study is available online.
To understand the gravity of this discovery, it is important to understand two things: that mercury is poison, and that high fructose corn syrup is in nearly all of our processed foods!

What is wrong with Mercury?

Among other things, the study describes mercury as a “potent brain toxin” that is known to cause brains to “develop abnormally, impairing learning abilities and reducing IQ.”
What is high fructose corn syrup?
High fructose corn syrup is an artificial sweetener found in many processed foods. According to the study, the average American consumes about 12 teaspoons per day!

Some of the more popular foods that were found to contain mercury included: Nutri-Grain Strawberry Cereal Bars, Quaker Oatmeal to-go bars, Hershey’s Chocolate Syrup, Yoplait Strawberry Yogurt, Market Pantry Grape Jelly and Coca-Cola.

Other foods containing mercury can be found on this list of 55 popular foods and beverages that contain high levels of high fructose corn syrup.

Thank you to William Mitchell College of Law student Emily Babcock for preparing this post.

February 12, 2009 in food safety, Ingredients | Permalink


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