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Rev Sci Tech. 1997 Aug;16(2):609-19.

[Contamination of bee products and risk for human health: situation in France].

[Article in French]

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Unité Abeille, Centre national d'études vétérinaires et alimentaires (CNEVA) Sophia-Antipolis, France.


To meet the needs of a colony, bees collect honey, honey-dew, pollen and water from an environment exposed to various bacterial and chemical contaminants, which might be incorporated in products for human consumption. In addition to this environmental pollution, contamination of bee products may also occur during packing. In France, tests for various pollutants are performed more or less systematically, at the request of the Ministry of Agriculture, merchants or producers. Honey and royal jelly contain very little bacterial or chemical contamination, due to both the ability of colonies to eliminate pathogenic and non-pathogenic micro-organisms present in their environment, and to the physico-chemical properties of these products, as well as the role of bees in filtering chemical pollutants. To create the framework for European legislation on the testing of products, bacterial and chemical standards should be created and should be based on standardised techniques. The testing of imported bee products requires greater attention.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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