1. Viable offer to the market
An exporter must offer a quality product of a volume and price that can compete with other honeys in the market place. Usually honey that is exported is not sold directly by beekeepers into the export market but first consolidated by a processor, honey trader, exporter or co-operative. These exporters must have the finance, expertise and commitment to engage in honey export and sufficient resources to buy adequate volumes of honey from beekeepers.
For any non-EU country to access EU markets it is essential that the country of origin of the honey has been accepted by the EC as a third country eligible to export honey - and this is achieved through the preparation, implementation and submission of a Residue Monitoring Plan (RMP). National governments must identify a Competent Authority to take responsibility for managing a Residue Monitoring System within the country and submitting a RMP annually to the EU.
Click here for the June 2010 list of 'third countries'.
Click here for more information on RMPs.
The greatest threats to the global honey trade are residues of medicines used to control bee diseases, or other extraneous chemicals. It is the responsibility of beekeepers to harvest honey that is free from residues and this is dependent on the way they manage the health of their bee colonies i.e. proper apiary management.