Confusion among honey consumers in Canada and the United States reached its peak over the last few weeks when the Canadian Food Inspection Agency and a lawsuit filed in Kansas alleged that the honey industry in both countries is rife with fraud.
For over 10 years, Mitchell Weinberg, founder of the food fraud investigation firm INSCATECH, has been speaking about the pervasiveness of food fraud. In responding to the recent news about honey fraud, Weinberg stated: "Finally, consumers are being made aware of the fact that they are being grossly misled about the authenticity of the food they consume. The situation with honey is particularly egregious, because honest beekeepers and a handful of ethical honey packers are battling severely declining honeybee populations, authentic honey shortages and unscrupulous actors in the honey industry."
INSCATECH recently launched a new honey authenticity certification program called GenuHoney, that Weinberg is striving to make the most stringent and transparent food authenticity certification yet. Weinberg stated that honey is the first of several commodities that INSCATECH will be certifying for authenticity. "Rebuilding consumer trust in honey and other food is paramount to INSCATECH. GenuHoney will provide consumers with certification that they can finally trust", said Weinberg.
Working with a leading provider of authentication technology and food authenticity testing labs Sweetwater Science (United States) and QSI and TSF² (United States, Europe and Asia), INSCATECH has formed a collaboration of forensic, technology and science experts to certify authentic honey. Some of the largest beekeepers and packers in the world have already subscribed to the GenuHoney program.
Weinberg says that if consumers can be assured about the authenticity of honey, they will be willing to pay for it.
INSCATECH is a food fraud detection and prevention company. The only company of its kind in the world, INSCATECH has established a solid reputation in the food industry as both a pioneer and the sole provider of food fraud intelligence investigations and food authenticity audits.
Cut out counterfeit attempts? Reid Fruits and Laava show it’s possible
Over three years, Reid Fruits drastically reduced the number of counterfeit attempts on their premium Tasmanian cherries, sold in Asian export markets where the brand was in high demand and had a strong reputation that was at risk from inferior products sold under fake Reid Fruits branding.
In the 2019-20 season, in a bid to fight the fakes, Reid Fruits introduced Laava Smart Fingerprints® on its cherry boxes bound for 20 export markets. The result: only 10 counterfeit attempts, all of which were automatically stopped by the Laava platform.