Tag Archives: Cane Sugar

The Stupid things Food Executives Say

Jones Soda, found right in the heart of my hometown, is trumpeting their release of 12 ounce canned soda sweetened with Pure Cane Sugar instead of High Fructose Corn Syrup.

The stupid thing said was uttered by Peter van Stolk.

Converting from HFCS to Pure Cane Sugar with our new our 12 ounce can line truly differentiates Jones and provides the consumer with a healthier alternative.

For a bit of context, let me make the following statement: Hitting your thumb with a hammer eleven times is healthier than hitting your thumb a dozen times.

Mr. van Stolk, while I’m a fan of your company and applaud you for going for the better tasting cane sugar in place of the government subsidized corn syrup, you are in fact still selling sugar laden soda and not a vitamin-enriched weight loss supplement that also cures the flu. There isn’t anything healthy about Jones soda.

But thanks for providing me a decent laugh this morning.

UPDATE: Mr. van Stolk mentions in the comments (no, really) that

…what I said was “pure cane sugar is a healthier alternative to HFCS”. If you think that is stupid, I am ok with that.

Upon reflection his quote is not stupid per se, but perhaps a bit presumptuous. And for the record, I had made the same presumption. But the fact remains that there has been no scientific study that has said that cane sugar is better for a person than HFCS. Lord knows I’ve tried to find one.

Marion Nestle, the food nutritionist and writer of such books as “Food Politics” and “What to eat” has stated that she could draw no distinction between cane sugar and HFCS. In her eyes, a sugar is a sugar, and neither items was one worth indulging in excessively.

tags technorati : Jones Soda High Fructose Corn Syrup


Passover Coke

A few weeks ago, I got ane-mail from Jason (he of Off the Broiler and eGullet), alerting me to the fact that Passover Coke was currently available. I was told to keep my eyes open.

So I kept my eyes open and found…nothing. Which kinda bummed me out, as I’ve always wondered if there is a taste difference between a Coke made with High Fructose Corn Syrup and one made with sucrose in its place.

As you can see by the photograph to the right,someone was able to tip me off that Passover Coke as able to be found at the QFC in University Village here in Seattle. I scooted on over there in my Mini Cooper and procured said beverage.

How did Coke get into the Passover business? It’s the result of a Rabbi by the name of Tobias Geffen who was the dean of Southern Jewish Orthodoxy. With that position, he was often asked which foods were kosher and which were not. One of these foods was Coca-Cola.

He approached the folks at Coke, and asked them for a list of inredients. In a very unorthodox moment,the folks at Coke relented (which runs contrary to their business practice – many people who work for Coke, don’t even know what goes into the drink).

Rabbi Geffen found that one of the ingredients – glycerin – was made from beef tallow. This made the drink unkosher.

A second problem existed as well…Coca Cola contains trace amounts of alcohol derived from the grain products used to sweeten the beverage, in this case, Corn. Since anything derived from grains is not allowable, this too made Coke unkosher.

Coca-Cola executives decided to produce a Coke that was Kosher for the Jewish community. The glycerin is made from vegetable products and the sweetner comes from Sugar beets and Sugar Cane. In today’s formula, all of the impurities that typically come with the beets and cane have been removed, and the ingredient added is simply sucrose.

Of course one person’s impurities is another person’s flavoring. While a drink made from cane sugar is easily distinguished from one made from HFCS, a drink made with sucrose is a little more difficult.

In my case, I was able to tell the difference, due less to the taste itself, as to how the beverage felt in my mouth. For me, the Kosher coke held the tongue a little longer and a little more succinctly. It also made felt a little “rougher” upon my teeth, I know that sounds peculiar, but I know of no other way to explain it.

Is there a taste difference? Some people swear there is, but in my opinion, the taste difference is so slight that you have to be looking for it in order to notice it. To those who go through life not caring about the taste of Coke, the difference is almost unoticable.

Kosher Coke production has ended for this year, but you may still be able to find some in Major Metropolitan areas. Look for the 2 liter bottles with the yellow caps. I have been unable to determine in they make Kosher Coke in cans.

Technorati Tags: Drink, Coca-Cola, Passover Coke


Dr. Pepper vs. Dr. Pepper

On the right-hand side of the above picture you’ll see a version of Dr. Pepper that’s only available in a 44 mile radius outside Dublin, Texas. What makes that Dr. Pepper so unique? It’s still made with cane sugar instead of High Fructose Corn Syrup. I ordered a case of the stuff directly from the bottler.

There’s a bit of history for the reason that they sell cane sugar Dr. Pepper while everyone else in the States doesn’t. The legal agreement required that Dublin Bottling Works to guarantee the quality of Dr Pepper to be pure and wholesome. The owner of the bottling plant decided that using HFCS would make an ‘imitation’ Dr. Pepper.

Now it may seem unique and even “exotic” that the Dublin Dr. Pepper hasn’t changed the intial recipe. But the real test is in tasting. How does the Dublin Dr. Pepper compare against the “regular” Dr. Pepper?

My friend Shelley, who claims that she has no palate, immediately tasted the difference. The original is not as sweet, not as carbonated, not as syrupy, and doesn’t have an extended aftertaste.

If you haven’t guessed already, I’m a fan of the Dublin Dr. Pepper. *shrug* Call me a traditionalist.

Technorati Tags: Food, soda, pop, Dr.Pepper