Honey is not required for human health.

Bees collect nectar from flowers in the warmer seasons to make and store honey as their food source in the colder seasons. They make the honey by chewing nectar and passing it to other bees to keep chewing until it becomes honey, and then they store it in honeycomb cells to insulate the hive. Bees that live in the hive eat the stored honey, and use it to feed their young. In their lifetime, one worker bee can produce just 1/12 of a teaspoon of honey. 

In commercial farms, when the honey is taken it can be replaced with sugar water, which does not contain the nutrients that bees require. This weakens their immune system and increases the chance of disease. To save the cost of housing, feeding and protecting the bees from disease over the winter, some beekeepers will kill the entire colony, often with cyanide gas.

Queen bees are used to breed new bee populations and are often artificially inseminated. They commonly have their wings clipped so that they cannot leave the hive to build a new colony elsewhere, maximising honey production for the beekeeper. As the queen's laying rate declines after around 2 years, she is killed and replaced, naturally living up to 5 years.

Considering that honey is not required by humans, this cruelty is completely unnecessary. If we purchase honey, we finance unnecessary animal cruelty.

There are many alternative liquid sweeteners to honey, including maple syrup, brown rice syrup, coconut nectar, agave nectar and molasses.


This article by The Vegan Society and this article by PETA provide more information on honey bees and common farming practices.



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