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We need your help!

Congressman Kelly Armstrong of North Dakota has introduced legislation to address many of the concerns our industry has had for many years. The bill is the Honey Integrity and Verification Enforcement Act (H.R. 4764). Passage of the Hive Act is very important to all U.S. honey producers… both large and small.

The creation of manufactured or synthetic honey is in our immediate future. We need Congress to pass the HIVE Act now so the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) will be required to establish a Standard of Identity (SOI) for honey. ABF has advocated for this for decades, but the FDA has continued to refuse all requests and petitions to establish an SOI for honey, with a long list of reasons for doing so. They will only move in this direction if they are required to do so through a change in legislation. They need to define what honey is AND what it is not. Consider pure maple honey. It is only made from sap that is extracted from a maple tree. Anything else is not pure maple honey… rather, it must be labelled “table syrup.”

In the same vein, manufactured “honey” is nothing more than honey-flavored syrup, plain and simple. It should never be labelled as honey. It looks, tastes, granulates, and cooks like natural honey, but neither a bee nor flower have contributed to its creation. The consequences of this manufactured product being called “honey” is that as a result of its inferior ingredients and lower price, real honey will be replaced with this synthetic product. As a result, two-thirds of real honey usage is expected to be displaced by this manufactured product.

The HIVE Act would:

  • Require the Food and Drug Administration to finally establish a standard of identity for honey and subsequently report to Congress on enforcement actions taken with respect to adulterated or misbranded honey.
  • Reorganize the existing US Department of Agriculture country of origin labeling requirements by utilizing the consumer-familiar ingredient labeling criteria.
    • Countries of origin would be listed in order of predominance, allowing the consumer to discern the origin of blended honey.

What you can do
Sign the Petition (click the link)                               AND/OR

Send a letter!
The ABF has a simple letter to your Representative and Senators in Washington, D.C. A sample is available HERE. This letter can be emailed directly to your district’s elected congressional officials. After sending the letter(s), please follow-up with a call to their offices and politely ask if they received your letter and whether they have decided to co-sponsor the HIVE Act or are in favor of it. Also, ask if they or their staff have any questions you can answer. This legislation needs to become law.

To assist you in finding your elected officials, go to:

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