Black Locust - Acacia Honey

Black Locust or False Acacia Honey Tree

Commonly sold in Europe as Acacia honey and in the United States as Locust or American Acacia, this honey is obtained from the False Acacia or Black Locust tree (Robinia pseudoacacia) and seldom from Acacia species at all. Also, it shouldn’t be confused with the Honey Locust (Gleditsia triacanthos), which, in spite of its name, does not produce honey at all.

The honey is extremely light colored, lemonish white or yellow-green, and if relatively free of other floral sources, it can be very transparent, like liquid glass. The aroma is floral, fruity, delicate, very persistent. The flavor is very sweet, slightly acidic with hints of vanilla and no aftertaste. The flowery notes are noticed best in the finish.

It has a lower acid content. It’s delicious combined with cheeses, especially pecorino and gorgonzola cheese. Because of its light taste, it is good for children and ideal on fresh cheeses (ricotta), yogurt, fruit and ice cream. The honey remains liquid and does not crystallize easily due to its high fructose content.

The black locust tree or false acacia, is native to eastern North America and widely planted in Europe. In France, Italy and Hungary it is known as Acacia honey. The honey in the US is sometimes labeled “American Acacia” or “Locust Honey”.  The tree grows from 30 to 70 feet and blossoms in May to June. During this time it can easily be found by following the highly aromatic, wonderfully sweet smell of the ample drooping clusters of white blossoms. Bees are drawn to the calyxes filled with nectar, returning throughout the day for ten days or so during the blossoming time. Nectar flow is dependent upon the weather and may not be consistent from year to year.

While different species, Acacia, Black Locust and Honey Locust all belong to the same family Fabaceae or Leguminosae (beans/ legumes). Also, in spite of its name, the Honey Locust tree (Gleditsia triacanthos) is not a honey producing plant. The name comes from the sweet tasting pulp of the pod-shaped fruit of the tree once used as food by American Indians.

Latin Name: Robinia pseudoacacia L.

Translations: Italian: Miele di robinia o acacia; French: Miel de robinier – Acacia, robinier faux acacia; Hungarian: Akácméz; German: Akazienhonig – Robinie-Honig

Honey Origin: Eastern North America and Europe. The main producers are Bulgaria, Hungary and Romania but it is also found in Canada, China, France and Italy.

Protected Geographical Status (PGS) framework (PDO/PGI) – EU: In the second half of May, Acacia honey is collected in the Lunigiana (Tuscany) Region of Italy (DOP – Italian version of PDO) Along with the DOP certification, it must be indicate the town where it was produced: Aulla, Bagnone, Casola in Lunigiana, Comano, Filattiera, Fivizzano, Fosdinova, Licciana Nardi, Mulazzo, Podenzana, Pontremoli, Tresana, Villafranca in Lunigiana, or Zeri

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11 comments to Black Locust – Acacia Honey

  • HT


    (Google translation: “Northern China is rich in acacia honey, good quality!”)

    China has a wealth of honey, but little is known about the varieties produced there. Most is used in commercial applications. I appreciate any information you can provide.


    – Scott

  • Dear sir we want to buy black locust honey could you please send us price,specification?

    Our packaging required 25kg or 30 kg bulk.

    with Thanks

  • Dear Sir/Madam,

    We glad to learn from the internet that your company deals and imports natural honey.

    Let us introduce ourselves:
    We are Kandela Group Ltd and we are dealing with agricultural products in Bulgaria and export to EU , Asia, Americas.

    Our company can supply linden, acacia or polyfloral honey in drums of 200ltr. (about 310kgs of honey). Origin is Bulgaria. Our honey is 100% natural product collected from local agricultural producers.

    If this presents interest to your company, please send us the quantity/quality needed, target price in order to work together in future.

    Kindly check our web page at

    Please feel free to contact me anytime.

    Best regards,
    Velisar Nedkov – General Manager
    Kandela Group Ltd
    Skype: kandelagroup
    Phone: ++359 878 177 519
    Bulgaria, Sofia
    10, Yana Yazova str

  • Hi Velisar:

    I am not in the honey selling business, but perhaps some of my readers are. I am publishing your information for all.


  • Sami Dagher

    Hi Scott,

    Can you pls clarify for us the issue of the Chinese honey ? we all know that the commercial honeys,which have no healthy beneficial, are unfortunately coming from China, so does the Acacia honey from China belong to this category ? what are the best genuine healthy honey types coming from China ?

    In the super markets, we find a lot of Honey brands and products stating that their original honey is imported from China. Any advise pls ?

    Many thanks,


  • Hi Sami:

    The simplest way to get raw, healthful honey is to buy directly from a reputable beekeeper. Pay more for the raw version if needed. It is worth it. Both for taste and healthful qualities. Distributors like supermarkets and wholesellers mix honeys together from dozens of sources in order to get consistent flavors and dependable production. Who knows where they come from? Yes there are tests for chemicals like antibiotics famously found in Chinese honey. But these are not used on all honey we eat. I am sure there are large suppliers that are exceptions to this, but they are rare.

    The mass production of food is causing problems for more than just honey. Look at the use of pesticides, antibiotics, hormones and worse in our own country for the food we consider staples. China is not alone in their use of these methods to increase the supply of cheap food. You can bet that many countries have used or will use similar methods to produce honey.

    Try going to farmer’s markets and getting to know the local beekeeper. Ask him how he produces honey. Let him know you would like unheated, simply strained honey and are willing to pay extra for it. There are some excellent beekeepers here in the US that are producing honey using ethical, sustainable means.

    I enjoy the taste and texture of honey and marvel at the different flavors from around the world. When I buy online, I try to buy from beekeepers directly and not from mass distributors. Manny heat their honey more that I would like because it makes it easier to handle. I usually ask, yet still buy the honey as long as they are not going crazy trying to pasteurize it. It is a bit of a crap shoot I admit, but if I like the flavor then I think I am ok. In the very rare case that it is bland or smoky or watery, then I simply don’t eat it. As a final note of good news you can always simply buy honey in the comb. This is almost always 100% safe and natural honey.

    …. Scott

  • Amalia Haas

    I am seeking a 55 gallon drum of Black Locust honey. If you or a reader can provide a lead, I would be grateful!

    Thank you.

  • Jaya

    We are dealers of 100% pure & natural honey. We have different varieties in monofloral and polyfloral honeys. Two of our best selling varieties are Himalayan Forest honey, and Himalayan Acacia honey. All the varieties are available in retail (200 gms, 250 gms, 500 gms,1 Kg etc) as well as bulk packaging (290 lit) at very competitive rates.
    We are also looking for distributors all across the globe.
    In case of any requirement, please contact us at [email protected]

  • Anton

    I got some Himalayan Organic Acacia honey as a gift, it was bought in America. Bottled in America, imported from India accredited by ECOCERT. Its nothing like the Acacia honey we love and know in Europe.

    Is this Acacia a different species entirely? The honey had crystalised which is unusual for Acacia and it is quite dark in colour certainly compared to European Acacia honey. The flavour is also completely different, being sourish like apple juice, very obviously fruity in fact. It’s also quite thin and runny even in its soft crystalised form.

    I wouldn’t say unpleasant but certainly strange. I wouldn’t buy it myself again just because it’s so unhoney like in flavour and feel in the mouth, almost like its been watered down with apple juice in fact.

    I think

  • Hi Anton:

    The Kashmir valley is a major honey producing area of India and is a common source of Himalayan Acacia Honey. Acacia honey produced here is from the False Acacia or Black Locust (Robinia pseudoacacia) and is one of the major unifloral honeys produced. But why the odd characteristics you experienced? Since it originates from the same tree as European Acacia, it should have the same characteristics, so I would suspect a few reasons:
    1/ It is not actually acacia honey.
    2/ It is not unifloral acacia honey and contains significant amounts of honey from other plant nectars. Typical proportions are 54% to 60% according to this study of Kashmir Valley Honeys
    3/ It has fermented. This is usually the result of a high water content which can be the result of harvesting the honey before it has been capped by the bee.

    I agree you shouldn’t buy it again, and you would be perfectly justified to complain to the supplier.


  • Anton

    Hi thanks Scot! Yes I think that’s is exactly what happened, that sourness like apples now you say it, is fermentation. It almost tingles in the mouth, cloudy and thin, runny as water.
    I reckon you are also right that it’s green honey, or honey not yet completed by the bees, uncapped and watery.

    I just bought some unifloral honey produced in Spain, Thyme honey, it’s fantastic. The difference is huge. You get that reassuring smell and taste of bee comb from the minute it hits the tongue which I like as a base for any honey’s flavour. I love the way it hesitates a second or two before settling, enveloping the tongue. It has a mature just slightly full body warm floral flavour without being too complex and just sweet enough. Yummy stuff!

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