Dennanne, New Honey Vendor at Oak Park Farmers' Market

It's pure honey - which is more rare than you might think.

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By David Hammond

Dennanne honey is based out of Joliet, Illinois, and it's sold at the Oak Park Farmers' Market by Kevin and Shary MacGregor.

It's pure honey.

Now, that may seem like an obvious claim, but did you  know there's a lot of adulterated and tainted honey on the market?

The Food and Drug Administration requires that anything labeled "honey" must contain pollen, but Food Safety News  reports that over three-quarters of the honey on the market contains no pollen.

One reason this honey doesn't contain pollen is that it's been "laundered" so that its point of origin cannot be determined. Honey producers and distributors may want to conceal the honey's source if it comes from, for instance, China or India. Both these countries have exported honey that's been found to contain illegal antibiotics.

The honey from Dennanne is just honey, and it's all from the same bees in the same areas. Looking over their counter, you'll notice that there are a lot of different colors of honey: some almost white, some light tan, some dark amber. They do sell whipped honey (which has air beaten into it, so it's going to be whiter), but all the other honey colors are simply the result of being harvested at different times of the year. Honey is lighter in springtime, and it usually gets darker as the summer progresses. Bees have different flowers to work with throughout the season, and that seasonal variation is reflected in this natural product.

"We have lots of people come back week after week," Kevin mentioned, and Shary added, ""They say there's no comparison between our honey and what they buy in the stores."

What's sold as honey in some stores is perhaps just colored sugar or, worse, honey that's been laundered to cover the country of origin and, thus, conceal what could be harmful contaminants.  According to the above-quoted article from Food Safety News, here are some honeys that may be locally available honeys and that do not contain pollen (and so should be purchased with some caution):

* CVS Honey

* Busy Bee Organic Honey

* Busy Bee Pure Clover Honey

* Walgreen MEL-0 Honey

Good news: Honey from Trader Joe's and "farmers' markets" was found to contain "the full, anticipated amount of pollen."



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