DOST: 82% of honey sold in PH made up of sugar syrup

Department of Science and Technology-Philippine Nuclear Research Institute (DoST-PNRI) found that 82 percent of honey sold in the country were impure and mainly made up of syrup.

The researchers revealed that the honey products have syrups made from corn and sugar cane, evident by the nuclear-based test results. This is a “fraudulent practice” that allows manufacturers to cut production costs but increase their products’ volume.

“Sixty-two out of the 76 (82 percent) of honey brands that were found to be adulterated were composed of 95 percent  C4 sugar syrup. So, they are not actually adulterated, but they are just completely purely sugar syrup,” said DoST-PNRI Dr. Angel T. Bautista VII.

He added there is a rampant selling of impure honey in the Philippine market.

Bautista said that 75 percent or 12 out of 16 local honey brands sold in groceries and souvenir shops were impure. Meanwhile, 87% or 64 out of 74 local honey brands sold are also not pure.

“The problem is that people are being tricked,” Bautista said.

finds 82% of honey sold in PH made up of sugar syrup

“You may be buying honey for its wonderful health benefits, but because of adulteration, you may actually just be buying pure sugar syrup. Consuming too much pure sugar syrup can lead to harmful health effects,” he added.

According to DoST-PNRI, impure honey could seriously damage the local industry, for it can decrease the price of honey. Impure honey could be sold as low as one-third of the original price of the authentic honey.

“Imagine, incomes that are supposed to be for our honest beekeepers and honey producers are being lost instead due to adulteration and fraud. This is affecting our local honey industry so badly that we estimate that they are losing P200 million per year,” Bautista lamented.

Bautista and the researchers forwarded their findings to the Department of Agriculture and the Food and Drug Administration.

“If we just release the names of the companies, they may stop for a while. But no one can stop them from faking honey again in the future. If we incorporate these isotope-based standards into our regulatory system and the Philippine National Standards, then we think it will be a long-lasting solution to this problem,”  Bautista reported.