some thoughts,jean marc, by me
jean marc said
I want to comment on Irwin's post # 60. It's interesting to see that some packer's test for honey and if they refuse the load because of residue issues, they do not notify the FDA. They justify that position by saying it's not my honey so it's not my problem. At that point they've only tested the honey and have not paid for it.To a degree I understand what they are saying. The honey then re-enters the market thru another packer, at least that's what the honey broker wants.
"In a way it would be in the interest of packer #1 to "blow the whistle" on that load of honey. It would be in his short term interest to have that honey removed from the market particularly if it gets offered to a second packer for a few pennies less. Packer # 1 is competing with packer #2 who has access to cheaper albeit contaminated honey.
So how come packer #1 does not blow the whistle? Does he value the relationship with the honey broker so much that he does not want to cause him any grief ? Is there such a shortage of honey that from a packer's point of vue it's better to pack honey with residue or honey that has circumvented duties than to pack no honey at all? From the packer's point of vue the worse that can happen to him is not to have honey to pack. Whether that honey is cheap or expensive if you do not have any you cannot pack it and resell it."
some thoughts by me on your comments Jean
The contaminated honey being returned to the broker is not viewed as a serious unhealthy product........no one has died yet ,or seriously been injured ,with a resulting lawsuit against the packer of any contaminated honey.I am sure all packers carry a good insurance package and know where to find good lawyers. This is still a law violation,(not reporting it ), and I think the law is a new one.
I cannot recall of any packer ever reporting to FDA antibiotics,adulteration or any contamination in honey. he bought or was about to buy.... this doesn't say too much about this group.This is a very small group of people, companies and they know each other like you and I know fellow beekeepers and they communicate quite well between themselves
The packer who tested and found residue has covered his butt by not buying the honey.
He does not wish to cause the broker pain, or the cost of destroying the honey, and wants to keep this supplier of large quantities as a supplier,especially if honey becomes short in supply.
Broker is looked at as a supplier of services, he supplies honey, don't shoot the messenger cause he ended up with some bad product to sell, and you may need this service down the road.China may or may not produce some good honey,depending on which packer you ask
Broker can probably supply a lot of good honey as well as the bad, which he may or may not be aware of- false or unrepresentative samples sent to the broker.
If you were a honest packer and you did accidently end up buying a load of adultrated or contaminated honey, how hard do you think it would be to get rid of it and not lose too much or any money?Me thinks not hard
The contamination could be blended out, to less than what could be found by present
testing, this I am guessing would be relatively easy, so the contaminated product becomes wholesome honey again and no one is any the wiser........ this could be and maybe is happening on regular basis.
Latest rumor I heard there was a certain packer or packers who were " specialized into" packing contaminated honey and the sting operation wasn't over yet, but soon would be. Funny one bad egg can ruin a whole carton,this might or might not be good for the industry as a whole ,right now.
The brokers soon learn who tests, who buys what ,and where the market is for this contaminated or adulterated honey, or combination of both
Its the same old game that has been playing for ages..... its called "we win" for the broker and "we win" for the packers......just got to bend the rules a bit... the big losers are the consumers and risk to their health, the producers of pure product,the US gov't which loses the revenue off circumvented honey and the entire industry .....which stoops to a new low.
Packers and their associations do not want to police themselves and the less they have to do with FDA and gov't regulations then the better off they think they are.As one packer said "FDA is the regulator". The FDA have been hampered with limited resources dealing within a small honey industry base and only a lot of pressure and sometimes personal funds by a few dedicated individuals in AHPA has resulted in the news we see.If you are a honey producer , an investment in membership here is the best investment money can buy.
One only has to look at the list of honey importing countries into the USA and Canada, how it has grown the past few years,countries who suddenly increase honey production by impossible precentages (900% in one year)....but not all of this honey is coming from china by transhipping but it is coming from all over the world. The market is growing and needs honey.It prefers cheaper imported honey,it grows even faster when that honey is cheaper than what it can be produced here for..... the industrial bakery trade market seems to be leading the pack and I fear it will be taking the biggest hit in this recession.....maybe a good thing it doesn't require pure white honey,just the cheap stuff
softing market .. lower prices?
Sioux Honey is reporting to us that they believe that there are still some
substantial price differences between legitimate honey in the world market
and honey that is highly questionable (adulterated, contaminated,
circumvented through a 3rd country). Sorting out the good from the bad can
be very difficult (costly & time consuming). Sioux is still leading the
industry with their testing, and they continue to reject any honey that
does not meet their stringent standards.
The raw honey market has been very fickle in the last few months as honey
producers throughout the world try to determine what effect the world wide
economic crisis will have on honey consumption. Prices started to soften,
then quickly firmed up because demand has not fallen off. Additionally
there appears to be more evidence of lower priced Chinese honey entering the
U.S. market transshipped through a 3rd country
Colony Collapse Disorder is still a real issue. Sioux has received reports
of some beekeepers losing up to half their colonies. More CCD reports will
probably start coming in as beekeepers prepare to move their bees into the
almond groves in California for pollination. The time period from now
through March is when we they get the best indications of how bad CCD will
be this year.
U.S consumption is still strong as we continue to consume over twice as much
honey as we produce in this country. Final numbers for the 2008 U.S. honey
crop are not in yet, but the crop was considerably better than last year.
Prices for U.S. honey were very strong as the crop came in, but we did see
some softening of those prices over the last couple months, again as
uncertainty in the economy grows
The strength of the U.S. dollar against the Euro is a factor that has helped
the U.S. to compete for some of the honey in the world market. Over the last
year, the weakened U.S. dollar had put them at a huge disadvantage competing
against Europe for the same honey. That exchange rate has fluctuated over
the last months, and most believe are now in a better position to bid for
raw honey in the world market.
Europe, whose insatiable appetite for honey has slowed a little, still is a
major factor in world honey market pricing. They continue to shy away from
Chinese and other Asian honey as they concentrate on South American honey
that is just entering the market. Much of South America is under extreme
drought conditions. Argentina has been especially hard hit, and their honey
crop projections are dismal (possibly half their normal crop).
Even with raw honey crop shortages in South America and demand for this
honey remaining strong, prices could stabilize at slightly lower prices
going into the 2nd quarter of 2009.
. So how do we as an industry change this.
Supposedly there is a law coming up whereby all food will have country of origin,on its label. the "bad "packer or packers won't be able to sell their tainted product .........chinese labelled honey will not sell in the market place , ........... they will be forced to buy the Good honey( will drive up its price I'm sure) or lose their market share completely...... the market will fix itself ,once correct labelling is in place........... or do we end up with more transhipped honey?Was this part of the COOL program, ... not sure... Obama resened all Bush's legislation passed in last 60 days, I think this was part of it
For a better explanation please see http://www.americanhoneyproducers.org/
open American Honey Producer Magazine 4th Quarter 2007 - In PDF (633 KB)
see page 12 topic UPDATE: TRADE ORDERS ON HONEY IMPORTS
FROM CHINA AND ARGENTINA
In one way I hope you are right Jean,. about prices continuing to climb, god knows producers need fair value for their product..... the other side of the coin is what happened in 2003-2003 and producers were told the shelf price became to high( by packers) AND prices quickly dropped from their peak .... once the stimulus pkg gets rollin and the markets get to "normal" there is going to be one hell of an inflation on all prices,commodities including honey......... but thats down the road.......2 weeks at least
this " funny honey " up north????
USA honey imports into Canada 2008 were up 62.9% from 2007............
usa was second largest importer after Australia
Usa value of imports was2.2o8M $ canadian
All honey exported by Canada is tested for CAP by US buyers, reptuable buyers!!!!!
maybe best keep your funny honey at home, we produce a surplus up here..... don't need anymore.......... all imported packaged honey and bulk is vigoursly tested by CFIA ........ anybody seen that tooth fairy
January honey report S. Kamberg
"That exchange rate has fluctuated over
the last months, and most believe are now in a better position to bid for
raw honey in the world market"
European honey buyers are quietly ,intently making inquires................ could quietly steal whats left of Canada's 2008 crop......... not much white honey out there.............even less will be produced in South America............ note how quickly the Brazilian crop was bought by US ,CANADA, EUROPE.......... and it wasn't primarly white ,mostly dark organic
whatever it costs to rid the market of chinese honey
I will gladly pay it,its been around for 30 + YEARS.If thats what takes, country of origin labelling, then let it be.Producers are already paying a tremendous cost in lower prices because of it...... so prices can only get better not worse
Adultrated,contaminated,transhipped chinese honey is the curse of the world honey market,especially the northAmerican and the US market in particular where60 -70 % of the US market must be supplied from the world market.They have been effectively blocked out of the European market, leaving them only the North american market to dump into. Add to this that the chinese honey is dumped at below market prices for whatever reason..............figure the cost of this on what you could possibly get for your product.Just look at the prices they were dumping at in 2008.see http://www.honey.com/honeyindustry/s...4countries.htm
These dumping prices affect the price of all honey,no matter what colour or grade .
Competition in industry is good, its a world market out there, what and how they are selling chinese honey is not competition, its a crime.......... and they have been getting away with it for far too long........any other food industry would have slaughtered em by now but we are a tiny, fractured , divided industry with more than its fair share of crooks
I agree protectionism will only lead to trade wars and a widening of the recession
yes, realize I can not have my cake and eat it too, ( would be nice, ) like the chinese have been able to currently do.
The problem being there is a market here for not only their legally duty surcharged honey plus their illegally adultrated dumped honey but
also a bigger "good' market for their illegal, contaminated product.
The even bigger problem is the current laws which allow this crooked thievery to be carried on.
No USA definition of the product honey, no ability to discern a honey by its composition to its country of origin.
Only sometihng like only 1 % of all food imports are examined at entry,so FDA Is really behind the 8 ball.
Current FDA bulletients list imported honey from Canada with imports from china,viet nam, malyasia, etc...
as having CAP in 80% of the honey imported, so FDA cannot even get that right,OR they are simply being over cautious.
The problem is not going away under the present rules and would still be a problem under the transhipped honey with country of origin rules. It may be just a choice of the lesser of two evils or one evil being easier to fix
Argentina honey price increases to beekeepers