How it works:
- In October 2018, researchers from Macquarie University published a report around this issue in the Nature Journal, Scientific Reports.
- Note: honey products are the third most adulterated food products behind milk and olive oil globally.
- Version 1: of the 38 Australian products they tested, they found that ~18% of Australian honey products sold were adulterated (diluted with corn syrup/sugar cane).
- Version 2: there were also concerns raised around the use of the official C4 sugar test, which is really old and cannot test certain syrups (e.g. rice syrup) which are commonly used to dilute honey products.
- Version 3: another concern raised was the mislabelling of products, where products which blended honey from different origins did not accurately label them as such.
Places to beware:
- States: Victoria, Queensland, New South Wales, Tasmania
What to do:
- Unfortunately, short of being an expert or a beekeeper yourself, there is no practical way of determining whether the product you buy is 100% authentic.
- The only way is to buy direct from a producer where you see it at the origin (i.e. the hive). This however is not very practical.
- As such, the most practical advice might be to try the product (if possible) before buying.