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Article Title

Sensory evaluation and chemical analysis of Apis mellifera honey from the Arab Gulf region

Abstract

Twenty-one honey samples, both collected directly from the hive and purchased from retail sources, were used in this study. Significant differences existed among the samples in terms of color, smell, thickness, mouth feel (texture), taste, sweetness, and aftertaste. Water content ranged from 11.1% to 19.8% and fructose and glucose represented the major sugar forms in all 21 samples. Fructose percentages ranged from 33.1% to 39.0%. Glucose percentages ranged from 25.6% to 37.3%. Trace amounts of sucrose were detected in most honey samples, with percentages ranging from 0.10% to 0.37%. Total sugar in the samples ranged from 64.9% to 80.4%. The glucose percentages in samples indicated all samples were fast granulating, while glucose/water ratios indicated that several samples were had non-granulating tendencies. All samples had fructose to glucose ratios greater than 1.0. Twelve of the 21 samples may have misleading glucose to water ratios, associated with low indices ranging from 1.01 to 1.14, and their data did not fit well with previously reported studies. In this study, a sample with a glucose/water ratio of ≥ 1.0 indicated a tendency to granulate rapidly, as compared to other granulating indices. The fructose to glucose ratio may not be the best index for granulation tendency. Based on the ratio of (glucose-water) to fructose, several honey brands had a lower granulation tendency; a finding in agreement with glucose to water ratio results. Differences between fructose and glucose contents ranged from 0.4% to 10.0%. Good correlations were found between sensory evaluations and chemical analyses of honey samples. The results of this study may help improve researchers' understanding of of honey properties and their impact on consumer preference.

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