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Counterfeit honey

Unraveling food industry lies - Many honey and spice products are counterfeit

Sunday, October 27, 2013 by: Ethan A. Huff, staff writer
Tags: counterfeit honey, spices, food myths


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(NaturalNews) It might be a hard pill for many people to swallow, but a significant segment of the food industry is built on a foundation of lies and deception. Grocery store and supermarket shelves everywhere are literally filled to the brim with products that claim to be one thing, but are really something else, including many unsuspecting food ingredients like cinnamon, honey, and saffron, for instance.

Many commercially available herbs and spices are, in fact, imitations or flat-out fakes, despite what they might say on the label. And yet, because the chicanery has been masked so carefully and precisely, even the most savvy among food connoisseurs are getting duped by this phony spice and sweetener racket that is taking advantage of widespread ignorance about how to accurately identify genuine foods.

Last year, for instance, the Food Safety Network (FSN) conducted a full-scale investigation into the legitimacy of honey, and found that more than 75 percent of all the so-called honey sold in stores is not actually honey (http://www.naturalnews.com/034102_honey_consumer_alert.html). On the contrary, many products labeled as honey contain no actual pollen, which means they cannot be honey, by definition. Unbeknownst to most people, many of these same honey products have also been "cut" with corn syrup and artificial sweeteners, both of which typically go undetected.

Real honey is unfiltered, which means it still contains pollen, antioxidants, and various other nutrients and materials that identify it as genuine. When these elements are filtered out, which is typically the case for most commercial honey products sold in stores, the end product is nothing more than a refined sweetener akin to granulated sugar or heavily-refined corn syrup, and that is sold at a premium price.

Are the spices you buy the real thing?

Many herbs and spices are also fake, including certain varieties of saffron and cinnamon. Because real saffron can only be grown in limited areas of the world, and is harvested just once a year at a very specific time, it is a very rare spice that can fetch as much as $10,000 a pound for the real deal. Consequently, the vast majority of the "saffron" sold in stores is nothing more than color-dyed corn stalks.

Real saffron, an ounce of which requires about 150 flowers and a reasonably intensive amount of labor to produce, is not going to cost just a few dollars for an ounce, which is how it is often priced and sold. You can learn more about fake saffron versus real saffron at the following link. (http://www.seriouseats.com)

Cinnamon is another spice that is often substituted with similar, but not quite the same, varieties of the Cinnamomum plant. Authentic cinnamon, which goes by the name of either Cinnamomum verum or Cinnamomum zeylanicum, has a much milder flavor than the cinnamon commonly sold in stores. It also happens to be the variety that contains the most potent medicinal compounds, which has earned it a reputation as a viable treatment for high blood pressure and cholesterol.

Cinnamomum verum, which often goes by the name of Ceylon cinnamon, is native to Sri Lanka, and does not grow well in most other regions of the world. As a result, it is much rarer, and consequently much more expensive than the many other varieties of Cinnamomum sold in stores as real cinnamon.

These other varieties include Cinnamomum aromaticum, Cinnamomum burmannii, Cinnamomum loureirii, and Cinnamomum cassia, all of which are related to the same family of plants as authentic Ceylon cinnamon, but are not actually real cinnamon. While these imposters might be more flavorful and acceptable to the modern palate, these cinnamon substitutes are much cheaper to produce, and are not as medicinally potent as the real thing.

To learn more about food secrets, be sure to check out the FREE NaturalNews report, 25 Amazing (and Weird) Facts About Food: http://www.naturalnews.com

Sources for this article include:

http://www.cracked.com

http://www.naturalnews.com

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