Monday, January 30, 2012

Is it Really Honey?





Is it Really Honey? 

I have two headlines below: "Is your honey fake" & "Pollen Who Cares"

Basically there are a lot of people out there who tout the "Health Benefits" of Honey.

There are "No Health Benefits" to Honey without "Honey"! So, if you don't care about the health benefits of Honey you shouldn't read on...if you are like me and add it to tea for a reason...then read on and buy the Right Honey!

Either side of the fence is just fine with me!
All in all, I hope this site is helping to inform you of ideas that will help you live a healthier life!

Health Benefits linked to Honey "Real Honey" that is:

"Stomach ailments, anemia and allergies are just a few of the conditions that may be improved by consumption of unprocessed honey." But beyond pollen's reported enzymes, antioxidants and well documented anti-allergenic benefits, a growing population of natural food advocates just don't want their honey messed with.






Is Your Honey Fake?

In a new report by Food Safety News, more than 75 percent of the honey on American supermarket shelves may be ultra-processed—to the point that all inherent medicinal properties are completely gone—and then smuggled into the country by the barrel drum. Nearly all of this fake honey is made in China. Some of these brokers will even create bogus country of origin papers. All 60 jars of "honey" tested by FSN came back negative for pollen (including Sue Bee and Winnie the Pooh brands), which is a clear sign of ultra-processing.
According to FSN:
"The removal of these microscopic particles from deep within a flower would make the nectar flunk the quality standards set by most of the world's food safety agencies. The food safety divisions of the World Health Organization, the European Commission and dozens of others have also ruled that without pollen, there is no way to determine whether the honey came from legitimate and safe sources."
Millions of pounds of honey that have been banned by the European Union are being smuggled into the U.S. from China. Much of this honey is tainted with illegal antibiotics, including chloramphenicol, which can cause DNA damage and cancer, and heavy metals like lead. The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) states that any product that's been ultra-filtered and no longer contains pollen IS NOT honey.
In their investigation, FSN discovered the following:
  • 76 percent of honey samples bought at grocery stores (such as TOP Food, Safeway, QFC, Kroger, Harris Teeter, etc.) were absent of pollen
  • 77 percent of the honey from big box stores (like Costco, Sam's Club, Walmart, and Target) were absent of pollen
  • 100 percent of the honey sampled from drug stores (like Walgreens, Rite-Aid, and CVS Pharmacy) were absent of pollen
The good news is, all of the samples from farmers markets, co-ops, and natural stores like Trader Joe's had the full, proper compliment of pollen, as did organic brands from common grocery stores.  But fake honey—the sorry substitute that it is—might be the ONLY thing even remotely resembling honey that you'll be able to get if we don't find a way to save our honeybees from total global collapse.

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Pollen? Who Cares?

Why should consumers care if their honey has had its pollen removed?

"Raw honey is thought to have many medicinal properties," says Kathy Egan, dietitian at College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, Mass.  "Stomach ailments, anemia and allergies are just a few of the conditions that may be improved by consumption of unprocessed honey."

But beyond pollen's reported enzymes, antioxidants and well documented anti-allergenic benefits, a growing population of natural food advocates just don't want their honey messed with.

There is enormous variety among honeys. They range in color from glass-clear to a dark mahogany and in consistency from watery to chunky to a crystallized solid. It's the plants and flowers where the bees forage for nectar that will determine the significant difference in the taste, aroma and color of what the bees produce. It is the processing that controls the texture.

Food historians say that in the 1950s the typical grocery might have offered three or four different brands of honey.  Today, a fair-sized store will offer 40 to 50 different types, flavors and sources of honey out of the estimated 300 different honeys made in the U.S.. And with the attractiveness of natural food and the locavore movement, honey's popularity is burgeoning. Unfortunately, with it comes the potential for fraud.
Concocting a sweet-tasting syrup out of cane, corn or beet sugar, rice syrup or any of more than a dozen sweetening agents is a great deal easier, quicker and far less expensive than dealing with the natural brew of bees.
However, even the most dedicated beekeeper can unknowingly put incorrect information on a honey jar's label.
Bryant has examined nearly 2,000 samples of honey sent in by beekeepers, honey importers, and ag officials checking commercial brands off store shelves. Types include premium honey such as "buckwheat, tupelo, sage, orange blossom, and sourwood" produced in Florida, North Carolina, California, New York and Virginia and "fireweed" from Alaska.
"Almost all were incorrectly labeled based on their pollen and nectar contents," he said.

Out of the 60 plus samples that Bryant tested for Food Safety News, the absolute most flavorful said "blackberry" on the label. When Bryant concluded his examination of the pollen in this sample he found clover and wildflowers clearly outnumbering a smattering of grains of blackberry pollen.

For the most part we are not talking about intentional fraud here. Contrary to their most fervent wishes, beekeepers can't control where their bees actually forage any more than they can keep the tides from changing. They offer their best guess on the predominant foliage within flying distance of the hives.
"I think we need a truth in labeling law in the U.S. as they have in other countries," Bryant added.
  
Source:

http://www.foodsafetynews.com/2011/11/tests-show-most-store-honey-isnt-honey/




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