Minerva scientific expands its honey adulteration testing capabilities

Honey has been reported as one of the top 10 most adulterated food commodities. It is a diverse natural product sourced globally and traded internationally and, as a high-value commodity, it may be targeted by fraudsters who extend the product for commercial gains using cheaper sugar syrups.

Minerva Scientific, the UKs leading honey testing laboratory, works closely with major importers, packers, and bee farmers to ensure the quality of honey in the marketplace. Currently, the only officially approved test available for checking honey for sugar syrup addition is the ‘C4 sugar’ test using C13 EA-IRMS technology. Minerva has offered this ISO17025 accredited test for many years. This test has limitations in that it can only detect addition of syrups derived from ‘C4’ plants such as cane and corn.

For the detection of added syrups derived from ‘C3’ plants such as beet and rice alternative EA/LC-IRMS based testing is required – the ‘C3 sugar’ test. In 2020 the European Commissions’ science and knowledge service, the Joint Research Council (JRC) satisfactorily completed an inter-laboratory study for this test and are now in the process of establishing officially approved harmonised procedures and decision-criteria for this approach. In anticipation of the official adoption of this procedure Minerva has established and can offer fully ISO17025 accredited testing for the detection of added C3-sugar syrups in honey.

Honey Testing at Minerva Scientific

Honey analysis is a core competence of Minerva’s business. We are able to offer an extensive range of both macro and trace analyses including commercial, adulteration and contaminants testing. Many of our tests are UKAS ISO17025 accredited.


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