Monday, February 16, 2009

New Zealand Beekeeper Charged for Selling Toxic Honey

Beekeeper Charged Over Honey Poisoning
NZPA, 2/15/2009

A beekeeper has been charged with selling food unfit for human consumption after his toxic honey allegedly caused convulsions and violent seizures.

Whangamata beekeeper Kevin Prout will appear in Waihi District Court on March 3, facing four charges under the Food Act .

Last April the Food Safety Authority (FSA) confirmed that tutu toxins in honeycomb from Mr Prout's Projen Apiary in Whangamata, marketed as "A Taste of Whangamata Pure Honey", poisoned 22 people.

FSA tests found the honey contained high levels of the toxic substances tutin and its derivative hyenanchin.

Toxic honey is caused when bees feed on "honeydew" secreted from the rear end of tiny sap-sucking vine-hopper insects feeding on the tutu plant…

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