Scottish 'superfood' heather honey is first in UK to win new stamp of quality

A Scottish honey newly recognised as a ‘superfood’ has become the first food in the UK to be awarded a new Kitemark guaranteeing its authenticity.

The launch of the new Food Assurance stamp comes amid a global rise in food fraud, which has eroded shopper confidence.

Honey is on Interpol’s list as one of the most adulterated and fraudulent food products on the market worldwide.

Now Scottish heather honey produced by the Edinburgh-based Scottish Bee Company has become the first to receive the accreditation.

The Scottish Bee Company's heather honey, which was recently recognised as a world-leading 'superfood', is the first food product in the UK to receive a new Kitemark guaranteeing authenticity

The honey, made in hives in the Lothians, Dumfriesshire, Stirlingshire, Fife and Aberdeenshire, was also recently confirmed to be among the most nutritious in the world.

Scientists labelled it a superfood after analysis revealed the honey contains up to 10 times more of the essential micronutrient manganese compared to global rivals.

Suzie Millar, Scottish Bee Company co-founder, said her team is “absolutely over the moon” to be the first to have been awarded the new Kitemark for Food Assurance.

She sad: “Provenance, purity, social responsibility and environmental sustainability is so important to us and we wanted to assure our customers around the world that when they buy a jar of our Scottish heather honey that’s exactly what they’re getting.

Suzie Millar and her husband Iain set up the Scottish Bee Company in 2017 in a bid to help slow the decline of honeybee populations and create home-grown, eco-friendly honey

“We’ve worked really hard to make sure we have a high-quality, strong provenance message to separate us from the obviously adulterated honeys that are on the market.”

The firm is hoping the status will raise the profile of our honey in the global market and help establish it as “a truly pure Scottish product”.

The BSI Kitemark has for more than a century acted as a symbol of quality, performance and safety to members of the public and businesses buying everything from personal protection equipment to digital services.

The new Kitemark for Food Assurance was created to help manufacturers verify the claims on their product labels, helping to build consumer trust and support transparency in the food chain.

To achieve the stamp, the Scottish Bee Company had each step of its supply chain audited, its honey samples tested for pesticides and genetically modified organisms in an independent laboratory environment and provided proof of where hives are located.

Howard Kerr, chief executive at the BSI, said: “Today, people want to understand the important details about the food they eat.

“By extending the power of the Kitemark into areas like food authenticity and provenance, including the Scottish Bee Company, BSI can serve that need. After all, customers deserve food that’s safe, sustainable and socially responsible.”

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