Nonsugar sweeteners drop in reaction to consumer demand |

Nonsugar sweeteners drop in reaction to consumer demand

Nonsugar sweeteners have dropped 17% in two decades, the Agriculture Department’s Economic Research Service said in a chart released last week.

“In 2021, the amount of caloric sweeteners available for consumption in the United States was 17% less than in 1999, falling to 127.3 pounds per person from 153.6 pounds,” ERS said.

“A reduction in the availability of total corn sweeteners (high-fructose corn syrup, glucose syrup, and dextrose) contributed to the drop. The availability of corn sweeteners fell from a peak of 85.7 pounds per person in 1999 to 55.3 pounds in 2021.

U.S. per capita caloric sweetener availability, 1970-2021

Corn sweeteners include high-fructose corn syrup, glucose syrup, and dextrose. Edible syrups include sorgo (sweet sorghum), maple and sugarcane syrup, edible molasses and edible refiners syrup. Courtesy USDA Economic Research Service

“Shifting preferences among consumers and food manufacturers, high corn prices, and competition with refined cane and beet sugars and other caloric sweeteners have contributed to this decline. The availability of refined cane and beet sugars fell from 102.3 pounds per person in 1972 to 60 pounds in 1986 and remained relatively flat for the next two and a half decades.

“Refined sugar availability began to rise in 2010, surpassing corn sweeteners in 2011 and reaching 69.7 pounds per person in 2021. Per capita honey availability stood at 1.5 pounds and per capita availability of edible syrups was 0.9 pounds in 2021.”