A report by Food Safety News earlier this week claims that the majority of the honey available in most grocery and department stores in the United States doesn’t legally meet the definition of "honey." It’s been "ultra-filtered," in order to produce a super-clear product that won’t crystallize. In the process, the honey loses any and all pollen, which is required to trace the honey to its origins in case of contamination and may have health benefits. Here’s how to find the good stuff.
This week’s report by Food Safety News sampled honey at grocery stores around the country, and found most of it has been filtered to the point where it has no pollen at all. The World Health Organization (WHO), the European Commission, and the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) all state that in order for a product to be called honey, there has to be some pollen content. The industry group that represents honey manufacturers and importers, the National Honey Board, says this is misleading, and says they’re just doing what their customers want. Food Safety Watch disagrees, and says removing all of the pollen from honey removes any way to test for its geographic origins, doesn’t improve shelf-life, negates the possible health benefits of pollen, and is actually being used to cover up the import of unregulated and often contaminated honey from China through another country like India and finally into the US. In fact, in the EU, pollen must be listed as an ingredient on bottles of honey so consumers know what they’re getting. The FDA, on the other hand, hasn’t responded to the allegations, and doesn’t currently inspect honey for pollen content.
The best way to deal with the controversy is to avoid it altogether. Real honey, sometimes marketed as "raw honey," is closer than you think. Natural food stores and farmers markets are far more likely to stock honey where the pollen has not been filtered out. They also tend to carry local honey, harvested by apiaries in your community that could use the support. Local Harvest, who we’ve mentioned can help you find a CSA, also can help you find an apiary or beekeeper in your area that sells their own honey. The closer to home you buy your honey, the better off you’ll be until the honey-laundering matter is settled.
What do you think? Do you already buy local honey, or know good ways to find it? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
Photo by Robert Neff.
“you are what you eat” so try to eat organic, GMO food sold to genetically modify you.
The Awakening contains very potent information though some people will have it fly over their heads, simply because of the amount of self belief it takes to realize what things really are. There are so many sheeple out there who deny the exploration of their own minds, therefore others as well, spirituality/consciousness and emotion is reality, to not be inquisitive is to deny self which in turn creates a dependence on the system, in turn forgoing and denying yourself, the way we live does not reflect who we are or what we are capable of. it is a travisty that blame is the most common medium of acceptance, blame information, blame money, blame resources all things that are controlled by others who wish to have control over you and me, history can be an effective weapon if it’s twisted.
Find the courage to look within yourselves, realize that fear is the trap, a trap good enough to make another want to kill another, another human being like you and me.
Love is indeed everything, it creates the harmony for life, without it things destruct and turn into nothing.
By Tim Townsend
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
ST. LOUIS (RNS) In 2003, Norman Gershman was looking for some of the righteous.
What he found astonished the investment banker-turned-photographer, and led him toward a project now on display in a St. Louis synagogue.
The Righteous Among Nations are gentile rescuers who make up “a small minority who mustered extraordinary courage to uphold human values,” according to Yad Vashem, Israel’s Holocaust memorial museum.
They are, the museum says, “the few who helped Jews in the darkest time in their history.”
Gershman’s story begins during the Holocaust and involves Albanian Muslims — villagers, peasants and farmers — who risked their lives and the lives of their families to shelter Jews fleeing Nazi Germany.
Italy invaded Albania in 1939 and occupied the country until the overthrow of Benito Mussolini in 1943. Germany then took over the Albanian occupation. Before the war, Gershman estimates from his research, only about 200 Jews lived in Albania, a country that is about 70 percent Muslim.
During the years of occupation, 10 times as many Jews streamed into Albania to escape persecution from Poland, Yugoslavia, Czechoslovakia, Greece and Italy. Gershman says it was the only country in Europe where the Jewish population grew by the end of the war.
Most of the hidden Jews either fled to Israel or back to their native countries after the war. Albania’s postwar communist regime made it impossible for the Jews who had been hidden to stay in touch with the Albanian Muslims who had provided shelter.
In 2003, New Jersey native Gershman heard hints of the story and began doing research, eventually traveling to Albania to begin interviewing those Muslims who took part and who were still alive. Gershman said it wasn’t just Muslim families who shielded Jews from the Nazis, but also Orthodox and Catholic families.
All of them were motivated by an Albanian code of honor called “besa,” a concept that can be translated into “keeping the promise,” Gershman says. The Albanian villagers were motivated to risk their lives by the simple concept of helping one’s neighbor.
“We chose to focus on the Muslims because, who ever heard of Muslims saving Jews?” Gershman said in a telephone interview from Israel, where he is at work on his next project.
Gershman’s research eventually led to an exhibit of his photographs, “Besa: A Code to Live By,” which opened recently at Congregation Temple Emanuel, and a book, Besa: Muslims Who Saved Jews in World War II.
The exhibit makes the case that the Muslim Albanian villagers who sheltered Jews from deportation to concentration camps did so from a sense of religious obligation.
“Besa is a cultural idea, but for the Muslims in Albania it was ingrained in their faith as well,” Gershman said.
Ahmet Karamustafa, professor of history and religious studies at Washington University, said saving a life is a universally acknowledged Muslim value.
Protecting a life, Karamustafa said, “has always ranked at the very top of moral and legal categories articulated by legal and theological scholars in Islam.”
The exhibit has been traveling the world since 2006, opening in Yad Vashem in Israel, the United Nations in New York, and synagogues, mosques, college campuses and Holocaust museums from Turkey to El Paso, Texas.
The exhibit of 30 photographs includes one of Lime Balla, born in 1910, who told Gershman that a group of 17 Jews came from the capital city of Tirana to her village of Gjergi in 1943 during the holy month of Ramadan.
“We divided them amongst the villagers,” Balla said, according to Gershman. “We were poor. We had no dining table, but we didn’t allow them to pay for food or shelter. We grew vegetables for all to eat. For 15 months, we dressed them as farmers like us. Even the local police knew.”
David Sherman, president of Temple Emanuel, said the synagogue “decided it could be an opportunity to educate the public about this piece of history that was a model of dialogue and tolerance.”
The synagogue’s rabbi, Justin Kerber, said one of the Reform congregation’s goals with the exhibit is to combat a common depiction of the modern relationship between Jews and Muslims.
“There’s so much coverage about Muslim-Jewish strife and conflict,” Kerber said. “It’s important to tell people that’s not the whole story, and these are examples of Muslim-Jewish respect, tolerance and love. This was a good opportunity for us to be part of that conversation.”
What really happened to Jesus 2,000 years ago? The Christian faith is based on New Testament accounts but some Historians and Theologians have very different – very controversial theories which some seems may disturb you. Did Jesus die?
The most celebrated human being in history was a first century Jewish revolutionary called Jesus. To his followers he was the Son of God with miraculous powers to walk on water, heal the sick and even bring people back from the dead. According to them he gave his life to save mankind. He was crucified and died. But on the third day he roused from the dead and ascended into heaven. But throughout history people has responded differently to this story. There have been those so inspired by the crucifixion that they wanted to share the experience. There have also been those who denied resurrection and have themselves been executed for their beliefs. There have been heresies that suggest that Jesus was rescued from crucifixion and escaped to live a secret life in southern France. And there have even been people convinced that Jesus survived and traveled to the mountain Kingdom of Kashmir where he died at the age of 80. To try and solve this 2,000 years old mystery some of the most devout Christians and Most Experts Scholars will suggest new ways of reading the Gospel and ask the question “Did Jesus Die on The Cross?”.
Jesus Christ was executed because he was a fundamentalist Jewish agitator in a country only precariously occupied by the Roman Empire. But he inspired a Religion that spread across the whole globe. He did this partly through his teachings and through his life and death but most of all; he became an inspiration for millions because his followers believe that he have resin from the dead.
Christianity is based upon the resurrection of Christ and upon the concept of Gospel Truth. To question one is to question the other. Throughout history the Church has treated these questions as heresy and persecuted those who ask them. But 2,000 years after the events many modern scholars and theologians and even some who are training for the priesthood now seems to doubt the historical accuracy of the Gospels, and even the literal truth of the idea that Jesus rose from the dead.
“I’ve never been able to find a dichotomy between being an historian and a theologian – or a good historian and a Christian, putting it very bluntly. I do not believe that gods and goddesses or anyone ever comes out from heaven and produces divine babies; I don’t believe it actually happens. Nor do I think that Jesus, in a literal sense went up to heaven to take his place at the right-hand of God”. (John Dominic Crossan, Professor of Religious Studies, DePaul University, Chicago)
But how has it happened that so many Christian Theologians have managed to interpret the Bible in ways that would have once been seen as heretical? The most obvious reasons can actually be found in the original texts themselves – in the four Gospels.
“I think the Gospels stories that are something handed to us from childhood. As we’re sitting in Primary school, we’re told there were four Apostles, and Jesus did this and Jesus did that and we see the pictures. To a certain extent, we do not encourage question beyond that. It is presented as a narrative. It is presented as a story that actually happened. For a lot of people that belief never goes further than that. They simply remember these stories and that’s what happened. The problem is moving beyond that to work out what exactly the Gospels are” (Peter Stanford, Religious Historian)
Zeitgeist: the Movie is a 2007 documentary film by Peter Joseph that asserts a number of ideas, including a mythological origin of Christianity, alternate theories for the parties responsible for the September 11th attacks, and finally, that bankers manipulate the international monetary system and the media in order to consolidate power.
The film was officially released online on June 18, 2007 on zeitgeistmovie.com. In addition to attracting significant public interest it has been criticized for reported factual inaccuracies, and the quality of its arguments.A sequel, Zeitgeist: Addendum, focuses further on the monetary system and advocates a resource-based social system influenced by the ideas of Jacque Fresco and The Venus Project.Following Zeitgeist: Addendum, Peter Joseph created an organization called The Zeitgeist Movement to promote the ideas of Fresco’s Venus Project. A third film called Zeitgeist: Moving Forward is scheduled to be released in January 2011. Peter Joseph has stated that its topics will focus on human behavior, technology, and rationality.