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Colombian stingless bee honeys characterized by multivariate analysis of physicochemical properties

  • Yaneth CARDONA
  • Alexandra TORRESEmail author
  • Wolfgang HOFFMANN
Original article


In this study, which took place from August 2014 to August 2015, we looked at the physicochemical properties of honey produced by seven species of stingless bees and the honey bee (Apis mellifera). Every 2 months, we took honey samples from the Apis mellifera, Melipona fuscipes, Melipona favosa favosa, and Melipona compressipes, and every 3 months, samples were taken of Trigona (Frieseomelitta) nigra, Scaptotrigona sp., Nannotrigona sp., and Trigona (Tetragonisca) angustula. The results showed that the physicochemical properties depend on bee species (p < 0.05) and not on the time of year (p > 0.05). In addition, the samples were 97.2% correctly classified using multivariate analysis. We found that the water content, refractive index, total sugars, total acidity, diastase, pH, and hydroxymethylfurfural (HMF) have a discriminant power of p < 0.05


honey stingless bees physicochemical properties Melipona species multivariate analysis 



The authors would like to also thank Russell Burrell for his cooperation in revising and editing this article.

Authors’ contribution

Y.C. and W.F. sampled honey samples. Y.C. performed experiments and analyzed data. Y.C. and A.T. wrote the manuscript. All authors revised, read, and approved the final manuscript.

Funding information

This work was supported by Ricola Foundation (Switzerland), within the framework of the project “Stingless bees as alternative pollinators” and the Universidad de Pamplona, Vicerrectoría de Investigaciones.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


Not applicable.


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Copyright information

© INRA, DIB and Springer-Verlag France SAS, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yaneth CARDONA
    • 1
  • Alexandra TORRES
    • 1
    Email author
  • Wolfgang HOFFMANN
    • 1
  1. 1.Departamento de Química, Grupo de BiocalorimetríaUniversidad de PamplonaPamplonaColombia

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