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Beekeeper Admits Selling Poisoned Honey

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Wellington, March 3 NZPA - A Whangamata beekeeper who today admitted selling honeycomb which inadvertently poisoned people will be sentenced in three weeks' time.

The honey, which was sold in Whangamata on the Coromandel last Easter by Projen Apiaries, continued a poison, tutin, which made 22 people sick. Kevin Prout pleaded guilty in Waihi District Court to four charges, three laid by the Food Safety Authority (FSA).

Three related to the sale of contaminated comb honey, and a fourth covered labelling of the honey.

FSA tests found the honey, marketed as "A Taste of Whangamata Pure Honey", contained high levels of the toxic substances tutin and its derivative hyenanchin.

The toxins ended up in the honey after bees fed on tutu bushes.

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