The Rwanda Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) on Friday, March 19, said that it will soon release a list of licensed producers of honey, following detection of adulteration in various honey products on the market. Honey adulteration is the process of adding cheap sweeteners such as sugar to pure honey, which diminishes its quality or even safety. The regulator made the announcement as seven people suspected of producing or selling unlicensed honey were paraded before the media on Friday. According to the Rwanda Investigation Bureau (RIB), an ongoing inspection exercise done in collaboration with Rwanda FDA has so far seen 1,300 kilograms of illegally produced honey seized. RIB parading distributors who are suspects of selling adulteration of honey at Remera Police station on March 19, 2021. / Dan Nsengiyumva The exercise, which is still ongoing, followed the banning of honey products of the brand Honey Hive, after a laboratory examination by the Authority showed that the producer adds sugar in honey. Speaking to the press, Alex Gisagara the head of the Foods and Drugs Inspection and Safety Monitoring at the Rwanda FDA, noted that a general inspection is ongoing to ascertain that honey products on the market are of quality. “Honey products of 15 brands are already undergoing laboratory examination, and we expect that soon we will release a list of approved honey producers to help the public know what to consume and what to not purchase,” he explained. Gisagara also urged all manufacturers to first seek for a certificate from FDA before embarking on producing foods and drugs related commodities, so as to avoid putting the lives of consumers at risk. Concerning honey products that are adulterated, he said that they may, especially, harm the health of diabetic consumers who most of the time opt for honey as a substitute of honey. Meanwhile, vendors arrested over selling unlicensed honey products said that they should not be the ones blamed or punished, but instead the main producers, saying that they had no idea that the products they purchased were illegal. They said that they have shown investigators where they purchased the products from, and showed the EBM receipts as well. However, the FDA stressed that all sellers should be mindful of the quality of the products they are going to buy for resale. The institution also highlighted that consumers should be keen while purchasing products, and make sure that those products have the Rwanda FDA mark (R). Other criteria to observe include date of manufacturing and expiration, the name of the producer, and ingredients of the product among others.