Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Food Technology

Committee Chair/Advisor

George Cavender

Committee Member

Johnny McGregor

Committee Member

Paul Dawson

Committee Member

Julie Northcutt

Committee Member

Sara Cothran


Honey is perhaps the oldest and one of the world's most widely used natural sweeteners. It is a viscous, sweet, golden substance bees produce via natural enzymatic and physical modification of flower nectar. It has long been prized for its unique flavor and medicinal properties. It can be incorporated into many applications, such as bread, cured meats, alcohol, condiments, candy, pharmaceuticals, and skin care products. In 2022 alone, America consumed over 600 million pounds of honey (Board Reports, 2023), but less than a fifth of that was produced domestically, the rest imported from other countries. The international honey trade can be very lucrative and, therefore, sometimes attracts greed and deception, which results in honey being one of the most adulterated food products in the world. Roughly 10% of honey imported to the US is adulterated (FDA, 2022). Consumption of adulterated products not only cheats consumers financially but can also result in health complications and, in severe instances, may even lead to death. The FDA has captured and prevented numerous shipments of adulterated honey from entering US food systems. A 2022 FDA report listed that from January 2021 – March 2022, 14 of 144 shipments of honey were reported to be adulterated to some degree and refused entry into the US (FDA, 2022).

Despite being natural, honey is a non-vegan product. This means that those choosing to adopt a vegan diet must choose other sweeteners, such as maple syrup, agave, and molasses, none of which resemble honey's flavor physical or nutritional traits. In this study, a novel plant-based honey alternative that is vegan-friendly was examined.

Included in

Food Science Commons



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