It’s been quite some time since I last posted – in fact it was 2011 when I talked about this same subject and apparently little has changed. on April 28, 2016 and again on June 29, 2016 special agents of Homeland Security Investigations (ICE) Chicago seized 120 tons of honey smuggled from China. When this honey entered the United States, it was claimed to be a product of Vietnam, but in fact testing showed that it came from China. It was transshipped through Vietnam to avoid anti-dumping tariffs on Chinese honey. You can read the full report here and here. What is especially disturbing about this is that honey from China has repeatedly been shown to be adulterated with other sweeteners and contaminated with harmful chemicals.
What should be of concern to the average consumer is that consumption of honey in the US is increasing and now to meet that demand we are now importing 70% of our honey with a substantial amount of that coming from countries of the Eastern hemisphere. From 2010 to 2015 imports from Asia have almost doubled from slightly over 60,000 metric tons to almost 120,00 metric tons. These major export countries are China, India, Vietnam, Ukraine, Thailand, Turkey and Taiwan. I don’t know about you, but I don’t get a warm and fuzzy feeling about my food coming from these countries.
What can you do as a consumer? Know the source of your honey,