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What is RAW Honey?

Do you know what RAW Honey is?  It’s not as simple as you would think.  Unbelievably, the UK Government and the EU commission, do not have an official classification for RAW honey, but the rest of the world does. 

RAW honey in the rest of the world, is classified as honey that has been minimally processed with with very little heat – with no temperatures rising above the working temperature of a beehive (between 42-45 degrees) and is unpasteurised.  RAW honey is allowed to be processed but not extensively, so removing impurities like pieces of honeycomb and bees is absolutely fine, but heating it and spinning it excessively to cream it, can damage the delicate enzymes within the honey.

So how do you know if your honey is RAW?

Check the label.  All products sold in the UK and Europe should adhere to strict EU labelling guidelines, these include if the honey is sourced in the EU or not, the type of honey it is (like Manuka), and it’s nutritional information.

A honey producer needs to prove that they adopt practices that comply with processing honey as RAW and this is agreed with their local trading standards team. 

Following on from recent discussions (March 2019) with the online retail giant, Amazon, the Association of Chief Trading Standards Officers (ACTSO), are taking a more detailed look and will issue further guidance to ensure there is a consistent set of rules for those who claim their honey is RAW.

At Manuka Honey Direct, we only have one brand that sells RAW Honey; Wedderspoon Manuka Honey.  All our other honeys, be they Manuka Honey or another type of honey, are not RAW as we cannot guarantee that they have not be warmed above the working temperature of a Beehive, and are processed intensively.

All we can say, is watch this space. At some point in the next year, we expect there to be a proper legal definition regarding the use of the term RAW in relation to honey, although with Brexit on the horizon, you never know when!


To view our full range of honey’s click here

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