Honey, prized since ancient times, is today shipped all over the planet. It is used as a pure foodstuff, a sweetening agent, in food manufacturing as well as in pharmaceuticals and more.
In this edition of The Food Programme, Sheila Dillon looks at the business of honey.
The story starts in rural Oxfordshire, where Rich Ward goes on a production site tour with Patrick Robinson - factory manager at Rowse, the biggest honey packer in the UK. The company brings honey in from all over the world for use in its own-label honeys and in honeys that it packs for its many customers. Rowse also blends honeys - matching the exact specifications of customers, including most of the major supermarkets.
Sheila meets Thomas Heck, a honey trader based in the City of London. His company procures large quantities of honeys from many countries that are shipped in large metal drums.
Hattie Ellis, author of 'Sweetness & Light: The Mysterious History of the Honeybee' joins Sheila to talk honey history and