Properties of honey from ten species of Peruvian stingless bees

Antonio J. Rodríguez-Malaver, Claus Rasmussen, María G. Gutiérrez, Florimar Gil, Beatriz Nieves, Patricia Vit

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

47 Scopus citations


Honey produced by ten stingless bee species (Melipona crinita, M. eburnea, M. grandis, M. illota, Nannotrigona melanocera, Partamona epiphytophila, Ptilotrigona lurida, Scaptotrigona polystica, Scaura latitarsis, and Tetragonisca angustula) from Peru has been characterized according to traditional physicochemical standards (color and moisture), biochemical components (flavonoids, polyphenols, nitrites, proteins), and bioactive properties (antibacterial activity, antioxidant capacity). Analytical data are also provided for a sample of Apis mellifera and an artificial honey control. For stingless bees, honey color varied between 26 and 150 mm Pfund. M. illota produced the lightest honey, while N. melanocera and T. angustula were the darkest. Moisture varied between 20.8 and 45.8 g water/100 g, confirming higher moisture for stingless bee honey than the A. mellifera honey standard of 20 g water/100 g. Flavonoids varied from 2.6 to 31.0 mg quercetin equivalents/100g, nitrites from 0.30 to 2.88 μmoles nitrites/100 g, polyphenols from 99.7 to 464.9 mg gallic acid equivalents/100g, proteins from 0.75 to 2.86 g/100 g, and the antioxidant capacity from 93.8 to 569.6 μmoles Trolox equivalents/100 g. The minimal inhibitory concentration (MIC) was slightly lower against Staphylococcus aureus (12.5 -50 g/100 mL) than Escherichia coli (50 g/100 mL).
Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)1221-1226
Number of pages6
JournalNatural Product Communications
Issue number9
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2009


  • Antibacterial
  • Antioxidant
  • Color
  • Honey
  • Meliponini
  • Moisture
  • Peru


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