Target: Brent Barkman, Chairman of the National Honey Board
Goal: End ultra-filtration, illegal importation, and mislabeling of honey or face a consumer boycott
According to Food Safety News, 75% of honey sold in US grocery stores is not really honey. This fake honey has been so highly-filtered and watered-down that it no longer contains the pollen which qualifies it as honey. In fact, pollen is the only ingredient in honey that allows it to pass quality standards tests throughout most of the world. Pollen is also an indicator that the honey was derived from actual bees. It is the only way of telling whether honey was naturally and safely sourced.
Food Safety News hired Texas A&M University’s Dr. Vaughn Bryant, an expert pollen analyzer, to conduct tests on honey sold in common US grocery chains. One-hundred percent of the honey he analyzed from pharmacy chains and fast food restaurants contained no pollen whatsoever. Conversely, 100% of the honey he analyzed from food cooperatives, farmers markets, and natural food grocers contained the proper amount of pollen. Organic honey had the largest amount of pollen.
To create the ultra-sweet, nearly transparent fake honey, real honey is heated and extensively filtered to remove pollen. Water is usually added to the substance to decrease its potency. This is a Chinese method, and indeed, U.S. honey distributors have bought enormous amounts of cheap Chinese honey over the years, often illegally. These foreign honeys are fraught with antibiotics illegal in the U.S. Domestic bee farmers believe honey is only ultra-filtered to hide the fact that it came from China.
Although the FDA asserts that products without pollen are not honey, it does not require fake honey distributors to label their products or even call their products something other than “honey.” The consumer continues to purchase these fake honeys unaware. Do you think you’re warding off allergies and improving your skin with the honey you consume? You’re not—not unless you buy locally, that is. Tell large honey producers and distributors that you are boycotting their fake products in favor of high-quality local alternatives.
Dear Mr. Barkman,
According to a study by Dr. Vaugn Bryant, a renowned melissopalynologists, 75% of honey sold in large chain grocery stores and 100% of honey sold in pharmacy chains and fast food restaurants lacks the pollen that qualifies it as honey. This lack of pollen also makes it impossible to trace the honey’s source and determine whether or not it was produced safely and domestically. Honey without pollen fails quality standards in the US, yet distributors continue to label this substance “honey” and market it to unknowing consumers.
Not only does this ultra-filtered product not qualify as honey not contain any of the health benefits of real honey, it is also likely derived from foreign sources. Cheap honey derived from China is full of antibiotics that are unsafe and illegal in the U.S. Until honey companies under your umbrella begin monitoring the pollen content of their products, I refuse to buy their honey. I will not purchase honey from companies like Great Eagle, Groeb Farms, Sioux Bee, or Honey Tree.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: autan via Fotopedia