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‘Honest Honey’ Changes Name to ‘True Source Honey™’ To Clarify Goal of Protecting U.S. Honey Consumers and Customers


Duty circumvention a threat to U.S. honey industry, honey supply quality

WASHINGTON, July 15, 2010

To further clarify its mission and for trademark purposes, the North American initiative formerly known as “Honest Honey” has changed its name to “True Source Honey.” The website for the initiative is now

Four North American honey marketing companies and importers – Golden Heritage Foods, LLC, Burleson’s Inc., Odem International, and Dutch Gold Honey – launched the initiative in May of this year and pledged to help protect the quality and reputation of the U.S. honey supply, as well as the sustainability of U.S. beekeepers and honey businesses. The initiative seeks to call attention to illegal sales of honey in circumvention of U.S. trade laws, a practice that the organizers estimate cost the United States up to $200 million in uncollected duties in 2008 and 2009 combined. With millions more pounds of circumvented honey entering the U.S. market in 2010, this illegal practice threatens a vital segment of U.S. agriculture.

“Initially we launched this initiative purely as an educational effort, but due to interest by the industry we feel the need to develop a name that can be trademarked for broader use,” said Jill Clark of Dutch Gold Honey, Lancaster, Penn. “Honest honey was not available for trademark use, so we’ve moved to True Source HoneyTM, a name which works even better in calling attention to the need for true and legal sourcing of this valuable food.” is an educational resource providing information about where honey comes from and ways consumers, honey companies, food manufacturers and retailers can take action to eliminate illegally imported honey. 

“When honey is imported illegally, no-one can be confident of its true source and quality. Some products are not 100% honey and have other quality issues,” said Clark. “We’re asking people who buy and love honey to find out more about how the honey they enjoy is sourced. By raising awareness of unfair trade practices and taking the True Source Honey pledge, we hope to protect consumers and manufacturers who use honey, and to preserve the fair honey trade.”

While many Americans purchase packaged honey, an even broader population enjoys honey in such products as cereals, breads, cookies, crackers, breakfast bars, meats, salad dressings, barbeque sauces, mustards, beverages, ice creams, yogurts and candies.

“Pick an aisle at the grocery store and you’ll probably find at least one honey product there,” said Clark. “It’s a product that is added because of its wholesome, pure quality and taste, which is all the more reason why this issue is important.”

“We estimate that millions of pounds of Chinese honey continue to enter the U.S. from countries that do not have commercial honey businesses,”
said Clark. “For example, countries such as Indonesia, Malaysia, Taiwan, Thailand, the Philippines and Mongolia raise few bees and have no history of producing honey in commercial quantities, yet have recently exported large amounts of honey to the United States.”

“Honey has earned a special place in people’s hearts and minds as a wholesome, natural food.  We want to protect that reputation and quality,”
said Clark.

The True Source Honey™ Initiative is an effort by a number of honey companies and importers to call attention to the problem of illegally sourced honey; to encourage action to protect consumers and customers from these practices; and to highlight and support legal, transparent and ethical sourcing. The initiative seeks to help maintain the reputation of honey as a high-quality, highly valued food and further sustain the U.S. honey sector.



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