New scientific publications about the complexity of honey authentication
The UK Government Chemist team, hosted at LGC, has recently published two scientific papers about the increasing complexity of honey authentication.
A story that appeared in the UK media in November 2020 about “supermarket brands of honey bulked out with cheap sugar syrups made from rice and corn” underlies these scientific publications. Back then, the Food Standards Agency asked the Government Chemist to provide an independent expert opinion on the dataset of analytical results that underpinned the story.
In Part 1, adulteration of honey and methods for its detection were reviewed followed by a thorough examination of more than 170 individual results from three certificates of analysis (CoA), representative of 13 CoA used to support the press article questioning honey authenticity in the UK.
This first article highlights the complex composition of honey and reviews some of the advanced analytical techniques applied to its authentication.
In Part 2, an interpretive system used in forensic science is suggested as a possible solution that could help to improve the evaluation of analytical findings and the assessment of their strength, helping to make authentication of honey more robust.