Examination of the per capita disappearance data for sweeteners and other sources of fructose showed that during the past two decades there was a considerable increase in the availability of free fructose in the food supply. However, the availability of the total amount of fructose, which includes both free and bound fructose, has remained relatively constant. Estimates of the average daily intake of fructose, based on the 1977-78 USDA Nationwide Food Consumption Survey, ranged from 15 g for infants to 54 g for males aged 15-18 y with a mean of 37 g for the total population. These values represent 7-9% of the energy intake (8% for the total population). For most sex/age groups nonalcoholic beverages (eg, soft drinks and fruit-flavored drinks) and grain products (eg, sweet bakery products) were the major sources of fructose; fruits and fruit products were the major sources of naturally occurring fructose; nonalcoholic beverages were the major sources of added fructose.