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No Sugar-Coating: 100% of UK-Imported Honey in EU Probably Fake, Test Shows

CC BY 2.0 / Flickr / Carlos Ebert / Honey
Honey - Sputnik International, 1920, 26.03.2023
Of all the honey consumed by Europeans, about 40 percent is imported from third countries - and it looks as though the British deliveries are prime suspects when it comes to quality control.
Almost half the honey imported into the EU - 46 percent of shipments - does not meet EU standards, according to a new investigation by the European Commission.
The commission tested 320 samples throughout Europe. Of the 21 samples taken in France, only four were "real" honey. Of more than 30 samples on German store shelves, fewer than half were of adequate quality. And all 10 samples of honey blended or packaged in the UK that were included in the test, failed, leading the report to suggest that it may have come from overseas.

"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," OLAF, the EU anti-fraud office, said as quoted by media.

The honey was found to be substandard in 74 percent of imports from China, 93 percent of Turkish honey, and 100 percent of honey from the UK.
Six years ago, when the authenticity of honey was last tested, only 14 percent of imports were substandard.
The vast majority of the irregularities came from the addition of foreign sugar, such as beet or rice syrup, which makes it cheaper to manufacture. Although this does not pose any risk to consumers, it reduces the health properties of the honey - and its value as well.
Following the test, the European Commission has opened an investigation of 44 companies, seven of which have already been sanctioned.
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