The honey aisles in the stores are getting larger and people can now choose between different types of honey. There is premium honey and very often, the stores are offering their own honey too. Very often people base their choice depending on the price and that’s wrong.
The investigation conducted by Food Safety News shows that about 75% of all honey bought from stores were processed with so-called “ultra-filtration”. This process is good when it comes to removal of impurities found in organic honey, but it also removes the pollen. Furthermore, the investigation confirmed that most of the honey products that were processed in this way were the ones that belong to the group of generic brands (store-brands).
Ultrafiltration is a process that’s criticized by many nutritionists. Some of them claim that wax, pollen and some of the other impurities are useful for our health and they are always a better option than the added sugar. In addition, this process doesn’t bring any benefits because there is no proof that it improves the shelf-life of honey.
According to Food Safety News, ultrafiltration can be a source of manipulation because the pollen is the only element of honey that can confirm the product’s origin (location). In fact, it was proven that some manufacturers are using this process only because of that. For example, honey producers from China are the ones that use this method most often because some of the regions where their honey is produced are heavily polluted.
Fake Honey Investigation
FSN took some samples and sent them to Vaughn Bryant, a professor at Texas A&M University and top pollen detective. He confirmed that about 75% of the honey was left without pollen, which means that he couldn’t confirm its origin and whether the honey is safe, or not. Of course, we are not talking about honey purchased in some local stores; they were all bought from large national stores.
For example, all of the honey found in drugstores like CVS Pharmacy and Walgreen’s were left without any pollen. The same goes for the Winnie the Pooh honey sold in Walmart and the honey offered in individual packets found in McDonald’s and KFC. Stunning 77% of honey from stores like Sam’s Club, Costco and Target had all pollen removed. On the other hand, honey bought from farmer markets and co-ops didn’t miss pollen or any other ingredient found in organic honey.
After this and few other similar investigations, many people have requested from FDA to take some action and to ban ultra-filtered honey from the stores, but so far, no actions were taken.
As a reminder, one ounce of raw organic honey contains more than 15 amino acids, 20 vitamins, 16 minerals and a large amount of phytonutrients and antioxidants. Raw honey is known for its strong antifungal, antiviral and antibacterial properties. This is one of the most nutritious foods found in the nature.
When we are already here, I have to mention the benefits of Manuka Honey also.
While we are waiting for the authorities to act, we have a good option that will help us avoid making the wrong choice and that’s buying honey from natural food stores and farmers’ market.
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