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There has been an ongoing dilemma about honey.  When you buy a jar, is it the real thing or has it been diluted with sugar, corn syrup or other additives? There was no way to tell by reading the label.  But recently the U.S. Food and Drug Administration said in new draft guidelines that food companies that add additives to pure honey must tell buyers that it’s not pure honey, and they must have labels to reflect that fact.  The labels must show the honey as a “blend”.

According to the website, Consumerist (www.consumerist.com):

“The only honey makers that can call their products honey are those that don’t add sugar, corn syrup or any other sweetener. The proposal’s aim is “to advise the regulated food industry on the proper labeling of honey and honey products to help ensure that honey and honey products are not adulterated or misbranded,”  the agency wrote.”

The article went on to relate that in the US, we consume about 400 millions pounds of honey each year, but we only produce approximately 149 million pounds.  So, we have to import millions of pounds of honey each year.  So, what are we really importing?

The articles further states:

“The FDA took on the honey question after a petition from the American Beekeeping Federation and other groups asked for a standard definition of the stuff to promote fair trade. So while the agency has decided not to do that, it said it would tackle the labeling issue.”

So this is welcome news and a step in the right direction.  We’ll see how the final rules are written and what that will mean to us, the consumer.

Do you know how to tell if honey is pure or if there are additives?  Please let us know!

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