Training about quality honey and detecting problems
USAID/Sweden FARMA II has provided technical support to strengthen the capacity of domestic laboratories for honey analyzes and quality monitoring systems
With the summer tourist season on the roads and markets throughout Bosnia and Herzegovina, domestic and foreign tourists have the opportunity to buy different honey products from local sellers. In 2017, the Food Safety Agency carried out a check of the quality of Bosnia and Herzegovina's honey and imported honey. The results of the analysis warn that there is a huge risk that if you choose to buy from among the unverified producers and sellers, which is most often sold along the road, you will get sugar blends and 'fake' honey.
"Considering the conducted research where we had a high percentage of irregularities on 100 samples, it is clear that we have a situation where beekeepers as quality honey producers are endangered and that consumers are endangered. In order to prevent the placing of 'fake' honey, we had also actions carried out in two companies, where we destroyed large quantities of these products", explained Nijaz Bajramovic from the Food Safety Agency.
In cooperation with the USAID/Sweden FARMA II project, the Food Safety Agency has launched a program of technical assistance to strengthen the capacities of domestic laboratories for the use of competent authorities and inspectors, as well as honey producers, distributors and importers of honey and bad honey problems. honey analysis and quality monitoring system. Thus, in the past period, a series of trainings were held in Banja Luka, Mostar and Sarajevo with representatives of the agency, competent institutions and laboratories, inspection bodies, and representatives of beekeeping associations and beekeepers.
"Honey is of high quality in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The problem is in sales, where, as we have said today, you have sales along the road, but also a wider and better control. This is a process that takes place, and education starts from beekeepers, then through the public and spreading awareness that buying quality honey is paid for beekeepers, but also for consumers," said Dario Lasic, an expert in honey quality testing and one of the lecturers in education program for beekeepers.
"Although, without laboratory analysis and adequate inspection, it is difficult for a common consumer to detect, some of the indicators exist. If the honey is too clear, there is no blur or crystallization, without an adequate declaration, you probably bought filtered sugar syrup, not honey", adds Lasic.