Properties and Sources of Fructose

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Fructose has a fruity taste that is rated sweeter than sucrose. Sweetness ratings of fructose are between 130% and 180% (in part dependent on the serving temperature) compared to the standard, sucrose, rated at 100%. Both sucrose and fructose are used extensively

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in foods to provide sweetness, texture, and palatability. These sugars also contribute to the appearance, preservation, and energy content of the food product.

Natural sources of dietary fructose are fruits, fruit juices, and some vegetables. In these foods, fructose is found as the monosaccharide and also as a component of the disaccharide, sucrose (Table 1). However, the primary source of fructose in Western diets is in sugars added to baked goods, candies, soft drinks, and other beverages sweetened with sucrose and high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS). HFCS is produced by hydrolyzing the starch in corn to glucose using «-amylase and glucoamylase. This is followed by treatment with glucose isomerase to yield a mixture of glucose and fructose. The process typically produces a HFCS composed of 42% fructose, 50% glucose, and 8% other sugars (HFCS-42). By fractionation, a concentrated fructose syrup containing 90% fructose can be isolated (HFCS-90). HFCS-42 and HFCS-90 are blended to produce HFCS-55, which is 55% fructose, 41% glucose, and 4% other sugars. HFCS-55 is the preferred sweetener used by the soft drink industry, although HFCS-42 is also commonly used as a sweetener in many processed food products. Concentrated

Fortification see Food Fortification: Developed Countries; Developing Countries

Table 1 Sucrose,

glucose, and fructose contents of fruits, vegetables, and sweeteners

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The Sugar Solution

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