Sting of toxic honey
THREE-quarters of the world’s honey contained pesticides that were harmful to human health, a study has found.
Scientists tested 198 samples from around the globe and found most contained at least one of the neonicotinoid chemicals – which can damage bees and attack the human nervous system in high doses.
Experts described the findings as alarming and of significant environmental concern for bees, but stressed any exposure was well within the safe limit for human consumption.
Neonicotinoids are neuro-active chemicals similar to nicotine that have proved highly effective at protecting crops from pests, especially aphids and root-eating grubs.
But campaigners have called for a complete ban on the pesticides, which they said damaged bees’ brains and impaired their ability to find pollen.
Dave Goulson, a professor of biology at the University of Sussex, said: “Beyond doubt, anyone who is regularly eating honey is most likely to be getting a small dose of mixed neurotoxins.”
He said, while this was unlikely to result in any “meaningful harm”, it was impossible to know the long-term effects on humans who consumed it.
The research, published in the journal Science, comes as the EU discusses extending a pesticide ban on crops that attract bees. – Daily Mail