Živoslav Tešić1, Milica Nešović2, Stevan Blagojević2
1Faculty of Chemistry, University of Belgrade, Studentski trg 12 – 16, 11000 Belgrade, Serbia
In recent years, the botanical and geographical origin of food has become an important topic in the context of food quality and safety, as well as consumer protection, in accordance with international standards. In the case of honeys, Melissopalynology analysis is used as the method of choice for assessing botanical origin. When collecting nectar, bees add a certain amount of pollen to it, which is used to assess the botanical origin. By counting pollen particles of appropriate plant species, botanical origin is attributed to such honey. The problem arises when honey contains a large number of pollen particles from nectarless plants. In such cases, it is necessary to apply some additional methods to assess the botanical origin. Polyphenols, secondary metabolites of plants, can provide important information about the origin. In this study, we analyzed buckwheat honey with different pollen content, which varied from 5 to 40% of pollen, nectar as well as pollen using the UHPLC-DAD system connected to triple-quadrupole mass spectrometer. The 31 polyphenols were quantified. Dominant content is found for propolis-derived flavonoids such as chrysin and pinocembrin. The significant contribution was also attributed to p-hydroxybenzoic acid and p-coumaric acid as others discovered and suggested as markers for the botanical origin of buckwheat honey. An excellent correlation was found between nectar and honey polyphenols regardless of the content of pollen particles . In the cases of buckwheat honey with low pollen content, comparing the polyphenolic profile of honey and nectar provides important additional data necessary for assessment of the botanical origin.
 M. Nesovic, U. Gasic, T. Tosti, N. Horvacki, N. Nedic, M. Sredojevic, S. Blagojevic, Lj. Ignjatovic and Z. Tesic, RSC Adv. 11 (2021) 25816 – 25829.