California inventors have found a way to make honey without bees.
MeliBio, a start-up company in Berkeley, Calif., has developed a technology to make synthetic honey that involves “plant science, synthetic biology and precision fermentation,” its website says.
“Our first product is plant based,” MeliBio chief executive Darko Mandich told foodnavigator.com. “We proudly say that our product is honey but not produced by bees.”
The company initially plans to sell its honey to food processing companies for use as an ingredient.
It’s not the first ersatz honey. In 2019, a group of students in Israel won a competition held by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology for a synthetic honey made from bacteria.
A big question remains about whether the products ought to be labelled to reveal how they are produced.
Now, if they can only find a way to make ersatz pollination.