Honey Laundering: How To Avoid Buying Contaminated Honey

Honey Laundering: How To Avoid Buying Contaminated Honey

Stephanie Barlow
Aug 17, 2011

Do you know where your honey comes from? Food Safety News reports that as much as a third of honey (and likely more) sold in the United States has been imported from China. So what? Much of this imported honey has been banned in Europe and likely contains potentially harmful additives. How can you avoid it?

One sure way to avoid imported honey is by buying it locally. Buy from farmers' markets and other suppliers that can guarantee its source. Although the FDA has signed off on the imported honey, the fact that it's been banned throughout Europe isn't a good sign. Honey from China and India has been found to contain several Indian-made animal antibiotics, including one the FDA has banned in food. Honey from India and China has also been found to contain lead.

So why isn't it banned in this country? The short answer is that it's a difficult thing to control. The United States imported 208 million pounds of honey over the past 18 months and while many efforts have been made to stop contaminated honey, almost 60 percent of imported honey came from traditional laundering points for Chinese honey. The EU believes honey from Asia to be contaminated and many feel the U.S. should follow suit.

Did you know about honey laundering?

Read more: Asian Honey, Banned in Europe, Is Flooding U.S. Grocery Shelves via Food Safety News

Related: Web Resource: Honey Locator

(Images: Flickr user botheredbybees licensed for use under Creative Commons)

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