Overheard on CNN.com: Local honey is better
No pollen was found in 100 percent of samples from drugstores including Walgreens, Rite-Aid and CVS Pharmacy.
November 10th, 2011
06:19 PM ET

Overheard on CNN.com: Local honey is better

Comments of the Day:

"And out goes the bottle of honey in my kitchen. Thanks, but I'm not eating sketchy food with a 1-in-3 shot of being smuggled in from China."–M.E.

"Imagine that, the Chinese doing something else illegal. Nice moral compass they have going over there."–Too Wang Dependant

Most honey sold in U.S. grocery stores not worthy of its name

At least one-third of all honey consumed in the U.S. was likely smuggled from China and could be tainted with illegal antibiotics and heavy metals, according to a Food Safety News investigation. Most honey samples from grocery stores and all from drugstores lacked any pollen, indicating the presence of other sweeteners or an ultra-filtration process that makes it impossible to source the product.

CNN.com readers discussed the benefits of buying local, raw honey - for taste, for health, and to support American farmers.

sbk said, "Another fine example of unregulated capitalism at work. Who says the free market will govern itself? You are naive if you think the free market cares about the well-being of its consumers."

Denise said, "I am so glad that they finally put out an article like this. I have been eating locally grown honey to keep me from getting symptoms of allergies for the last few years. Locally grown honey is the real stuff, and it tastes different and better than regular commercial honey."

New Englander said, "I get my honey from a neighbor who keeps bees. Same with the maple syrup. It's too bad that lax regulations allow things like this to happen, when they clearly affect hard-working American farmers. There is some evidence that eating very local honey helps people with seasonal pollen allergies: another reason to buy it from a local beekeeper."

Kat said, "I grew up in the honey trade – my father's a beekeeper. I occasionally experience bouts of allergies. A single tablespoon of bee pollen–preferably local and under 4-5 years old–is all I need for the rest of the year. I have felt the effect in under a minute. But take caution if you've never tried it, you may have an adverse reaction."

Iain asked, "Does any of this come as a surprise in a country where so much food is processed, and volume and profit come before quality?"

Rob C said, "The problem is that people want cheap stuff and then are surprised when all of the jobs are moved overseas. I am certainly guilty of this too, but when we shop at big-box stores we are voting with our wallet to get rid of U.S. jobs."

Richp said, "Just wait a few years, makes one wonder about the 300 percent increase in things like autism and other developmentally disabled people. As for the heavy metals, again, cumulative, takes years to show up; so, by all means, let's just ignore it and see what happens. Until then I'll just continue to get my honey from a local bee keeper."

seakans said, "KFC no longer serves honey packets. It now says "honey sauce" and the main 1st ingredient is High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS)."

teb0504 said, "Take the fake honey off the shelves. All food should be clearly labeled as to where it came from. I am so sick and tired of the crap that gets sent here from other countries. We should have the choice to buy what we want/don't want by where it came from."

pinkladybird said, "After selling direct for four years to consumers through many farmers markets and national retail chain store fronts, I have found about 98% of the consumers know nothing about honey, right down to even the very basic difference between raw and pasteurized. Because of this, the whole industry is taking full advantage of that ignorance."

cmayo said, "I am a honey broker in Florida. I sell the world's best honey and purchase by the barrel directly from the apiary. I know exactly where it comes from, who the bee keeper is and how they farm the honey. If we purchase more of our food from our local American farmers, we have a better chance of purchasing quality products for our family and supporting our own American farmers."

Bob said, "As a former amateur bee keeper and chemist for the darker things I can tell you honey is not just sugar water but picks up various enzymes from the bee. Evidence is that they are good for you. I remember seeing Bureau of Labor statistics many years ago listing the average lifespan of various occupations. Bee keepers and orchestra conductors were at the top of the list. You figure."

CNN Truth Squad: Romney misses mark on mortgage mess

The lending policies of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac did not cause the crash of the U.S. housing market, CNN's Truth Squad concluded. Although former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney blamed the government-sponsored entities during the Wednesday night GOP debate, CNN fact checkers found that "the most extensive investigation of the 2008 crash to date puts most of the blame on private lenders and regulators."

Most CNN.com readers expressed frustration that conservatives wouldn't accept the facts. Smallbizstar said, "Mitt doesn't get it. He is so willing to stick with his party rhetoric that he is willing to overlook the facts. At least he's consistent."

dreucalypt said, "No amount of debunking of the lie that Fannie and Freddie and the CRA caused the crash will cause that lie to go away. The Republicans have too much at stake, and too much of their own responsibility to hide, in order to stop using this lie to shift the blame."

ZBzoom said, "Big surprise, Republican/Tparty and this pathetic lot of candidates makes up facts to suit their view of the world. I'm still looking for their facts that tax cuts for the rich and cutting regulation creates jobs in America. It sure looks like what it did under Bush was create jobs in China and an economic meltdown here."

wscot said, "As a lender for 35 years in the residential mortgage market, I have to agree with CNN's findings. The meltdown started from the time unregulated mortgage brokers got into the business and used every loophole they could find to place unqualified individuals into homes. The banks I worked for bought these loans and sold them to Fannie and Freddie. The competition to buy these loans and the lax underwriting of these loans by the banks caused the huge amount of defaults. It had nothing to do with what the fed was doing but with the rampant fraud due to unregulated lending practices!"

thing55 said, "Right-wing elements are trying to brainwash the public that the problem was too much intervention by government and too much regulation when, in fact, it was just the opposite. We can't move on in the right direction until this false narrative is debunked, as CNN has done here."

Do you feel your views align with these commenters' thoughts? Post a comment below or sound off on video.

Compiled by the CNN.com moderation staff. Some comments edited for length or clarity.

soundoff (47 Responses)
  1. Bimbo the Birthday Clown

    Okay....I couldn't follow this thread at all.

    November 11, 2011 at 12:22 am | Report abuse |
  2. raven

    I wasnt gonna admit this, but I DO buy my honey from the grocery store. Ew, right ? Everyones sayin they buy theirs locally already, but I dunno anyone around here that keeps bees. Guess Ill hafta let my fingers do the walkin and break out that phone book..

    November 11, 2011 at 4:07 am | Report abuse |
  3. raven

    I wonder if Kindereggs are made in China?

    November 11, 2011 at 4:11 am | Report abuse |
  4. Andreas Moser

    What does the bees' union say?

    November 11, 2011 at 5:00 am | Report abuse |
  5. Scottish Mama

    Mine says it is from Canada and Ill. I think if it is from China it should have to say that. Like bottled in Canada, Made in China. Don't we have laws about saying where it is made or are there loopholes?lol

    November 11, 2011 at 9:15 am | Report abuse |
  6. banasy©

    Obviously, loopholes..lol

    @raven: *Again* with the Kindereggs? Lmao!

    Yeah, pmk and I were having a convo, and THAT GUY decided to throw in his two cents about whatever his Liturgy of Lectures voice in his head told him to say. I'll admit my conversation with pmk was off-topic, but really?

    @justathought: word.

    November 11, 2011 at 9:59 am | Report abuse |
  7. Mmmmm

    What kinda dance do bees do at weddings?
    the buzz stop...

    November 11, 2011 at 10:06 am | Report abuse |
  8. banasy©

    Buzz stop? Lol.

    November 11, 2011 at 11:06 am | Report abuse |
  9. banasy©

    You're very good at puns.
    Shake your Djbouti?

    November 11, 2011 at 11:26 am | Report abuse |


    November 11, 2011 at 8:50 pm | Report abuse |
  11. david

    This is just another indication that the Chinese are not to be trusted. They are our real enemy in more ways than one.

    The only way they will clean up their act is if we boycot all of their products. You may save a few bucks buying that crap, but none of it lasts.

    November 12, 2011 at 11:09 am | Report abuse |
  12. Mmmmm

    oh and why isn't FDA doing its job on imports...if it doesn't meet American standards it does not get imported...and what about the tariffs?

    November 12, 2011 at 4:23 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Doug

    If the honey has no pollen, you're not getting the allergenic affects from exposure to local allergens either. If you use local honey (wherever you are), you're exposed to local pollens which builds your immune system.

    November 14, 2011 at 10:17 am | Report abuse |
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