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1 hour ago, Rob's BP said:

Factors that relate to consistently high honey production e.g. climate & flower sources.

Extremely interesting video Rob.  I don't think it necessarily relates to high honey production/floral sources, much food source could probably be mimicked in certain temperatures. Looks like hives at times are under cover.  Your comment re chemical testing - What chemicals are they testing for?  

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In no particular order: Factors that relate to consistently high honey production e.g. climate & flower sources. Bees need plenty of supplies to consistently generate lots of RJ in addition t

I've seen sites where lines of hives had a roof over them, but no walls, so bees are free to leave and act naturally.    Besides the active ingredients, they test for Chloramphenicol and Str

not sure they actually have “crops” to forage for honey, doesn’t it come from a sugar bag ?

If Chinese royal jelly is coming into NZ, do you know whether or not MPI test it for antibiotics, Strept etc?  Can C4 be isolated on royal jelly lab analysis?

 

It's interesting that in NZ we have country of origin on foods, but it appears not supposedly natural product for medicinal or cosmetic use.  

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The labelling standards on food needs to change and hopefully this new era post covid will see that change, bacon imported from overseas where the label states, “ made in NZ with local and imported ingredients” the main ingredient came in on a plane. 

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4 minutes ago, Stoney said:

The labelling standards on food needs to change and hopefully this new era post covid will see that change, bacon imported from overseas where the label states, “ made in NZ with local and imported ingredients” the main ingredient came in on a plane. 

I assume you felt the same about "manuka" labelling of a year or three ago ?

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4 hours ago, Rob's BP said:

Specialisation, these people specialise in RJ production, they're not doing it as a bit on the side while e.g. chasing higher value honey crops. This is a whole family vocation

...

FYI, here's a pretty good video of the family production end of the supply chain 

 

great video, thanks for sharing. And a good reminder that chinese beekeepers are people too, and likely working hard and doing good to support themselves and their families.

 

It's not people like these who are the cause of sugar syrup honey adulteration, if anything it's a regulatory failure in the west (regardless of whether some find bureaucracy and regulation anathema, there's still a role to be played...)

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10 minutes ago, Stoney said:

The labelling standards on food needs to change and hopefully this new era post covid will see that change, bacon imported from overseas where the label states, “ made in NZ with local and imported ingredients” the main ingredient came in on a plane. 

100% support country of origin food labeling. I love bacon, but will not buy any with "and imported ingredients". Maybe that makes me a hypocrite on some fronts, who knows...

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10 minutes ago, tommy dave said:

100% support country of origin food labeling. I love bacon, but will not buy any with "and imported ingredients". Maybe that makes me a hypocrite on some fronts, who knows...

Pork labeling is an interesting scenario.  We import a lot.  Yes, some of it is labeled NZ Pork.  But there are some cunning labeling ploys e.g." NZ Mum's night out - cook pork."  This is deceptive for many because it doesn't say that the pork isn't NZ produced.  My take on this labeling, is that it is not NZ produced.  It is playing on hurry purchase without thinking.  

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17 minutes ago, tommy dave said:

It's not people like these who are the cause of sugar syrup honey adulteration, if anything it's a regulatory failure in the west (

Not sure that we should be blaming this on the west.  Much does get picked up at various borders.  Yes, I understand that there are many innocent Chinese workers, but there will be Chinese exporting/laundering very aware of C4 adulteration.  

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Posted (edited)
6 minutes ago, jamesc said:

Fascinating video ..... the most interesting part was the thought process after watching it, so I watched it again.

 

We are being told to buckle down and accept low prices for our product because we need to match what China is putting out into the market  .... but watch again  ..... harvesting royal jelly in building s with mud floors, no white overalls, hairnets, gloves  , dog walking in the door ..... need I go on ?

 

I wondered if it was their living quarters.  Don't we have RMPs so people can't pack or extract honey in their kitchens? Then there is the issue of RMPs or whatever is required for medicinal use.  Oh, I forget Covid 19 hygiene

Edited by Maggie James
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24 minutes ago, yesbut said:

I assume you felt the same about "manuka" labelling of a year or three ago ?

 

25 minutes ago, yesbut said:

I assume you felt the same about "manuka" labelling of a year or three ago ?

I wasn’t aware of Manuka honey being imported to nz 

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20 minutes ago, Stoney said:

 

I wasn’t aware of Manuka honey being imported to nz 

Not yet anyway.  But if the fragmentation within the industry continues, it will happen.  The other option would prob be if MPI run the industry!  Like it or not, no matter whether or not you have industry body affiliations, I think there is a chance of either happening.  There are a lot out there who do not belong to an industry body, and they all have their own personal and very good reasons, and some quite distressing, for not doing so.  

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New Zealand pork struggles because it has to compete with imported product that doesn't have to meet the same standards as here.

I applaud the fact that we have animal welfare standards and can't comprehend why any imported products don't have to meet the same standard.

MPI tell us that we have to do this that and the other thing to meet expectations of importing countries but when you go to those countries you find that while they have regulations they are not the same as ours and in many places not even close.

Personally I think this failure is caused by people in the bureaucracy rather than Parliament because no matter who is in power we still have to put up with the same crud.

Yes we need standards but they should be sane and based on science not on some pen pushers whim of the moment.

 

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12 hours ago, john berry said:

New Zealand pork struggles because it has to compete with imported product that doesn't have to meet the same standards as here.

I applaud the fact that we have animal welfare standards and can't comprehend why any imported products don't have to meet the same standard.

MPI tell us that we have to do this that and the other thing to meet expectations of importing countries but when you go to those countries you find that while they have regulations they are not the same as ours and in many places not even close.

Personally I think this failure is caused by people in the bureaucracy rather than Parliament because no matter who is in power we still have to put up with the same crud.

Yes we need standards but they should be sane and based on science not on some pen pushers whim of the moment.

 

Well said John. If China can dictate how we test and value our honey why can’t be set import standards on pork ? Are we too smaller market to have any say ? 

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Posted (edited)

The other interesting thing about Rob's Royal Jelly video is that if you Google stalk the Chinese honey co that apparently made the video .... they come up as a collaboration between an Aussie company and a Ugandan company ..... subterfuge in the bees .....? No different I suppose from NZ Honey companies backed by China, packaged in Europe under their labelling laws and marketed as 100% NZ.

Cunning!

 

 

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On 1/06/2020 at 3:57 PM, Maggie James said:

If Chinese royal jelly is coming into NZ, do you know whether or not MPI test it for antibiotics, Strept etc?  Can C4 be isolated on royal jelly lab analysis?

 

You can definitely test propolis using the same machine that honey is tested with, but the results will be meaningless without a good framework for interpretation. If you're simply looking to check that propolis hasn't been 'bulked out' with foreign sugars, then there's probably more robust ways to measure that.

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51 minutes ago, Jacob said:

If you're simply looking to check that propolis hasn't been 'bulked out' with foreign sugars, then there's probably more robust ways to measure that.

Jacob - Do you know whether there is anyone testing propolis that comes across the NZ border?  

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On 2/06/2020 at 7:57 AM, nikki watts said:

Well said John. If China can dictate how we test and value our honey why can’t be set import standards on pork ? Are we too smaller market to have any say ? 

No we are not strong enough.

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19 hours ago, Maggie James said:

Jacob - Do you know whether there is anyone testing propolis that comes across the NZ border?  

 

Not that @Kate R or I know of. There's not that much propolis testing full stop really. It's all possible of course, but the volumes are so low that the prices would be high, and people don't like high prices.

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24 minutes ago, Jacob said:

 

Not that @Kate R or I know of. There's not that much propolis testing full stop really. It's all possible of course, but the volumes are so low that the prices would be high, and people don't like high prices.

 

As another commment, propolis isn't a very easy sample type to work with which is one of the major reasons most labs in NZ don't test it (or at least not routinely). 

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1 hour ago, Kate R said:

 

As another commment, propolis isn't a very easy sample type to work with which is one of the major reasons most labs in NZ don't test it (or at least not routinely). 

by comparison, is a lot of testing done on beeswax to determine things like synthetic varroa treatment contamination?

Is that even a real thing?

And if it is, would it be likely that propolis is also contaminated, but not tested?

 

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7 minutes ago, ChrisM said:

by comparison, is a lot of testing done on beeswax to determine things like synthetic varroa treatment contamination?

Is that even a real thing?

And if it is, would it be likely that propolis is also contaminated, but not tested?

 

 

Not a hell of a lot of that going on either. We certainly don't do it. We used to do flumethrin and fluvalinate (Bayvarol and Apistan respectively, I believe) but the demand just isn't there any more. A small number of people do it through overseas labs though.

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3 hours ago, Kate R said:

 

propolis isn't a very easy sample type to work with which is one of the major reasons most labs in NZ don't test it (or at least not routinely). 

Agree that propolis is a very complex product. From memory there are about 200 chemical components in Propolis, with more still undiscovered, and these components vary depending on plant source. 

wrt not routinely tested: Several companies market their propolis on it's flavonoid level and/or CAPE. Therefore each batch will be tested. Do the companies do this in-house?

Besides the active/beneficial compounds, propolis can contain contaminents, e.g. it used to contain lead from paint and fuel exhausts, perhaps contaminants get tested too?

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On 6/1/2020 at 2:32 PM, john berry said:

This practice might meet the letter of the law but ethically ?

 

Ethic-what? I think I heard that word once. Since when have producers and vendors cared about ethics in food labelling when you can make money by tricking people? I suppose practices like this might reduce over time as most people become interested in clearer designation of origin labelling, but while there's still a price difference you'll still have a market for local products and imported products along side one another.

 

 

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