Thanks for all the replies to this topic.
You have all hit all the nails on their head.
Dane's post is excellent! He explains exactly what I mean:
[Many people truly appreciate that varietal distinction and it's fun to hear folk's taste impressions
and deciding which is their favorite.]
RDY- [...kinda ruff on the soybean arnt you...]
I don't have a dislike for soybean, this was just the variety I was told it was, but you can see given
the source, the truth of variety is up for debate. Different varieties of plants can give off entirely
different nectar flavors too, it might be an odd soybean variety too.
[As is sometimes said more of it is sold than is actually produced.]
And this is a point I was hoping would come to light in this discussion. I don't think any of us find it
fair to mislabel to fill a varietal niche in a slow or lacking year. It does a disservice to those that are
crafty enough to follow a flow or even find a flow in the first place.
[...you used to hang out with some pretty bad Beeks or is it you have a certain disdain for Old-timers.]
I have a lot of respect for old-time beekeepers.
American beekeeping would not be what it is without them.
I mean the likes of AI Root and Charles Dadant and such.
But my local senior crowd is a different batch of people.
They are feeling a struggle to make money, without much new investment.
Bee packages are getting more expensive, hive pests tougher to resolve, and this is a toll on them.
When you get close to down and out that is when you get desperate.
And that is part of my point of this post, morals.
All beekeepers come to a crossroad where they have to make moral judgments.
When we get to that point, we don't want to pose them to a group and face the heat.
So we might not ask, and we might do what we never though we would.
My idea is that I see a bad situation, I thought you guys might benefit from discussing it.
Perhaps you will set your morals deeper in stone so that you never are on such a slippery slope.
The replies like:
reinbeau - "Those members should be ashamed of themselves!"
Sir Stungalot - "God, that is just shamefull."
indypartridge - "..not all Indiana beeks are unethical jerkwads."
.... Are all proof that you guys (gals) are an ethical group and care deeply about the things you and the public image that you create for the beekeeping community.
For what it is worth, I appreciate it and I am sure your fellow beekeepers also appreciate it.
Many of you are concerned that perhaps my opinion against this is being voiced or heard.
Don't worry too much, the actions mentioned above are of only a few people, but the masses understand.
While we can not force a member to re-label their product (no matter how wrong we know it to be), we as a group see how shallow these actions are and that coheres the group in a more moral group.
This topic (and others) about being in an area with poor beekeeping practices and weak mentoring is not a cry for sympathy. Despite these conditions I have become a good beekeeper (and I'm always trying to improve). And anyone, anyone with any drive can do it too. So I hope it is seen as words of encouragement. If nothing else, you should hopefully be able to say I am a good person because I am not doing -> (add bad beekeeping topic here) <- .
Again thanks for your replies... keep them coming if you have more, I'll add more comments later.
PS - Bad honey flavors can come from processing. Bacteria as BMAC added can introduce new awkward flavors that can not be removed. Heating can burn pollen and cause honey to turn dark - not to say all dark honey is burnt though! Honey gets it flavor from pollen and the alcohols in the nectar sources. If honey has burnt pollen, the alcohols that gave it taste were burned off long ago, leaving only sugars. Overheated and tasteless honeys are often classified as "Bakery Honey" as they are used not for a specific flavor, but rather more for sweetness and any residual honey flavor. Also be careful to use clean food grade plastics, some plastics can introduce 'foreign tastes' to honey. The old product in a used bucket can also introduce tastes, sometimes despite really good cleaning.