How did corn syrup get such a bad reputation? While there are certainly differences between this corn-based sweetener and the sugar that comes from beets & cane, the opinions many of us hold about what separates them are rooted in much more than the scant scientific evidence on their differing impact on human health. In this episode, Benjamin Cohen joins us to talk about the history behind the corn syrup controversy, the deep roots that lie beneath our understandings of food and purity, and how understanding this story might help us make better decision moving forward.
Dr. Benjamin R. Cohen is Associate Professor of Engineering Studies and Environmental Studies at Lafayette College and co-editor w/ Michael Kideckel & Anna Zeide of the new collection Acquired Tastes: Stories About the Origins of Modern Food (MIT Press, 2021). His previous book, Pure Adulteration: Cheating on Nature in the Age of Manufactured Food (University of Chicago Press, 2019), was the topic of his previous appearance in RTN #161 Food in The Era of Adulteration. Learn more about his work at his personal website or by following him on twitter at @BRCohen95.
This episode was edited by Gary Fletcher.