Originally published November 11 2011
Don't waste your money and risk your health with "funny honey" illegally imported from China
by PF Louis
(NaturalNews) Raw, unfiltered honey is your healthiest choice for health benefits. You couldn't ask for a healthier sweetener, unless you pay more for New Zealand Manuka honey. However, there are several honey scams that deprive you of honey's health benefits. Some of the honey posers are absolutely unhealthy.
The best is pure raw honey. Adulterated honey is mostly real honey with additives, which should be listed on the label. Then there is imitation or fake honey. It is usually a syrupy concoction of cane sugar or high fructose corn syrup in water with colorings and binding additives, and maybe a small amount of honey.
Both pure and adulterated honeys have similar identification markings, pollen. Fake honey has no pollen. Honey can be legitimately filtered to remove wax and other large particles. But ultra-filtering removes the pollen completely.
Almost 80% of the brands from big box grocers and pharmacies tested by Food Safety News had no trace of pollen. Add 100% without pollen in those little packets of honey provided by airlines and restaurants. Products are listed here (http://www.foodsafetynews.com/2011/11/tests-...). Despite even congressional demands that the FDA do something to curb the fraud, the FDA refuses. Maybe they're too busy harassing raw milk providers.
"Ultra filtering makes no sense," asserted Mark Jensen, president of the American Honey Producers Association. He went on to say no real honey producer would do that because it's costly and diminishes quality.
But Jensen added this stinger: "In my judgment, it is pretty safe to assume that any ultra-filtered honey on store shelves is Chinese honey and it's even safer to assume that it entered the country in violation of federal law."
Chinese honey is fake funny honey that bypasses strict tariffs, imposed a few years ago to keep cheap Chinese honey from squeezing USA bee keepers out of the honey market. The reason it's so cheap is that it usually has no honey in it! So how do they avoid the tariffs and keep that high markup intact?
Simply misdirecting the point of origin is one way. Sending it to Canada or Mexico, then changing the shipping labels there and sending the containers across the border is the essence of this shuffle.
Another way is to simply lie about the contents of 50 gallon drums, using fake labels of other items that match the funny honey prices. Since either method involves food brokers in the middle, retailers who purchase at good prices don't ask questions.
According to reporters investigating, they don't answer questions either.
This is probably not a Chinese conspiracy. The Chinese are having the same issues with funny honey on their grocery shelves.
Co-ops, farmers markets, and respected health food stores all had high marks from Food Safety News. Pollen showed up in all the products tested. So the worst honey you could get from them is adulterated, i.e. containing mostly real raw honey partially filtered with some additives. Again, your best bet is raw, unfiltered honey from a reliable source. It's worth the extra cost for its nutritional and healing properties.
Sources for this article includes:
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