Significance of Nonaromatic Organic Acids in Honey

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Although organic acids represent <0.5% of honey's constituents, they make important contributions to the organoleptic, physical, and chemical properties of honey. Todate, approximately 30 nonaromatic organic acids have been identified in honey, but relatively little attention has been paid to these components. This article reviews the current literature related to the significance of nonaromatic organic acids in honey; it was written with a goal of attracting researchers to study these interesting honey components. Previous research contributions on nonaromatic organic acids in honey may be classified into five main areas: (i) the antibacterial activities of these acids, (ii) the antioxidant activities of these acids, (iii) the use of these acids as possible indicators of incipient fermentation, (iv) the use of these acids for treatment of Varroa infestation, and (v) the use of these acids as factors for the characterization of both botanical and geographical origins of honeys. We conclude that nonaromatic organic acids are of interest for diverse reasons and that there is a particular need for studies regarding their possible antibacterial and antioxidant activities.


Document Type: Review Article

Affiliations: 1: Facultad de Farmacia, Departamento de Química Analítica, Nutrición y Bromatología, Área de Nutrición y Bromatología, Universidad de Santiago, 15782 Santiago de Compostela, Galicia, Spain 2: Facultad de Ciencias, Departamento de Biotecnología y Ciencia de los Alimentos, Área de Nutrición y Bromatología, Universidad de Burgos, Plaza de Misael Bañuelos García s/n, 09001 Burgos, Castilla y León, Spain

Publication date: December 1, 2003

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    First published in 1937, the Journal of Food Protection®, is a refereed monthly publication. Each issue contains scientific research and authoritative review articles reporting on a variety of topics in food science pertaining to food safety and quality. The Journal is internationally recognized as the leading publication in the field of food microbiology with a readership exceeding 11,000 scientists from 70 countries. The Journal of Food Protection® is indexed in Index Medicus, Current Contents, BIOSIS, PubMed, Medline, and many others.

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