West News Wire: Nothing in the beloved children’s book by AA Milne made Winnie-the-Pooh happier than a jar of “hunny.”
But now that every sample of UK honey failed an EU authenticity test, honey lovers may need to be more careful about the stuff they are purchasing.
In spite of being blended or packaged in Britain, all 10 samples of regular honey from the UK were found to have failed adulteration tests. The honey was likely imported from outside and combined with sugar syrup, according to the European Commission’s inquiry.
According to the survey, 46% of all analyzed samples were found to be fake. When 320 samples were evaluated by the EU’s directorate general for health and food safety, which collaborated with 18 nations in the EU food fraud network, it was discovered that 147 had “at least one marker of extraneous sugar sources” detected.
Its report, published last week in conjunction with the Joint Research Centre, said honey exported from the UK to Europe had a 100 per cent suspicion rate that “could be the result of honey produced in other countries and further processed in the UK before its re-export to the EU”.
The UK Government said it was testing the results but that there was no threat to consumer safety. Olaf, the EU’s anti-fraud office, warned: “Such practices defraud consumers and put honest producers in jeopardy as they face unfair competition from operators who can slash prices thanks to illicit, cheap ingredients.”
Last year, the UK imported more than 38,000 tonnes of honey from China, where there is a known risk of adulteration with sugar syrup.
Consumers will be unaware of the true authenticity and provenance of their honey because country of origin labelling is not required for a blended product from more than one nation.