29 Honey Consumption Statistics To Feed Your Curiosity (2024)

Honey Consumption Statistics

Honey: It’s not just for breakfast anymore. Well, maybe it is for some … but for everyone else, it’s a sweetener that can be used in thousands of different dishes.

From breads to breakfasts and everything in between, honey can be found as an ingredient all across the country. Unless you’ve been hiding under a rock, you’re probably aware that honey sales are on the rise throughout the United States (and the rest of the world).

Are you curious to learn more about honey consumption? Whether you’re a beekeeper, a honey-lover, or just a casual sweet tooth, we have something for you. Dive into this comprehensive list and learn more about honey consumption, its sweetness benefits, and its unfailing appeal.

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Honey Consumption Statistics [Editor’s Picks]

  • The annual honey consumption in the United States per capita is about 1.4 pounds in 2021.
  • The global consumption of honey reached 1.8 million tonnes in 2015.
  • Of the total US honey consumption in 2018, 75% was imported, while 25% was produced.
  • Honey ranked behind granulated sugar as the most preferred sweetener in 2019.
  • In 2020, the honey demand in the US reached 571 million pounds, up by 8% from the previous year.
  • Breakfast is when honey is most used throughout the day.
  • Europe is the top consumer of honey.
  • The Central African Republic consumes 9.62 grams of honey per day, making it the top honey-consuming country.

Honey Consumption In the United States

1. The annual honey consumption in the United States per capita is about 1.4 pounds in 2021.

(Bee Culture)

The US produced 513 million pounds of honey and exported 36 million pounds to other countries.

To calculate per capita consumption, first, subtract the honey exported (36 million pounds) from the honey produced (513 million pounds), and you will get 477 million pounds.

Divide the difference by the 2021 US population, which was 332 million in July 2021. This gives you about 1.4 pounds of honey consumed per capita, the lowest amount since 2012.


2. About 75% of the honey eaten in the US is imported.

(Bee Culture)

Of the total US honey consumption in 2018, 75% was imported, while 25% was produced in the US. In 2018, the total honey consumed in the US was 594.9 million pounds—152.3 million pounds was generated in the country, and 442.6 million pounds were imported from other countries.

Honey imports in the US come from different countries around the world, with India being the largest source, followed by Vietnam, Argentina, and Brazil.

Imported honey is coming in large volumes since the US consumption of honey is more than 500 million pounds, but its production is lacking 400 million pounds to meet the country’s growing demand for honey.


3. The percentage of Americans buying honey has gone up by 4% from 2020 to 2021.

(National Honey Board)

Between 2020 and 2021, the general American population purchasing honey has grown by 4 points regardless of an increase in price.

While 13% of consumers purchase honey due to a promotion, 50% buy a jar of honey simply because they need to replenish their stock. Also, while other sweeteners are less costly, many food manufacturers are still willing to pay a premium for honey as an integral ingredient in their products.


4. Almost half of the consumers know that eating honey will help keep the bee population healthy.

(National Honey Board)

According to a 2021 survey, 48% of consumers are aware that consuming honey is good for the bee population. On the other hand, around 25% aren’t aware.

According to the National Honey Board and other major organizations around honey consumption, consuming honey is good for bees as long as you buy from beekeepers that practice regenerative and organic ways to raise beehives. These beekeepers keep honey bees healthy and help them thrive for future generations.


5. Roughly 4% of consumers will consume less honey next year.

(National Honey Board)

4% of consumers state that they will eat less honey next year. On the other hand, 21% claim that they will probably eat more honey, while 75% say that they’ll be eating the same amount of honey next year.

Among the top reasons why consumers are discouraged from eating more honey next year are because they’re trying to lessen their sugar consumption (30%), and they don’t really enjoy eating honey (24%).

On the other hand, a few people are discouraged from increasing their honey consumption because of how hard it is to find organic and raw honey.


6. Breakfast is when honey is most used throughout the day.

(National Honey Board)

40% of honey usage occurs at breakfast. On the contrary, lunch is when 21% of honey is used, and dinner takes up 19%.

Aside from these three meals, honey is also consumed with snacks, mixed with alcoholic beverages, or in smoothies, tea, or coffee.


7. When it comes to adulterated natural foods, nearly three out of four consumers are concerned about honey.

(National Honey Board)

Consumers are becoming more aware of how important the clarity and color of honey are when making their purchases. They want to get only organic and pure honey that is free from additives.

As a result, consumers don’t frequent traditional grocers and supercenters when buying high-quality honey.


Honey Consumption As a Preferred Sweetener Statistics

8. Honey ranks behind granulated sugar as the most preferred sweetener.

(National Honey Board)

In 2019, honey lost its top spot to granulated sugar as America’s favorite sweetener. 30% of the general population prefer white sugar or granulated sugar, while only 24% prefer honey.

Zero-calorie sweeteners like Sweet N Low and Splenda took third place at 11. Next on the list were brown sugar (9%), maple syrup (8%), and stevia (8%).


9. Only 5% of consumers were aware of the use of honey as a spread in 2021.

(National Honey Board)

Although nothing has changed to this percentage from 2020, this shows a 6% from 2018, when 11% of consumers use honey as a spread.

Additionally, jam and fruit spreads account for 27% of spreads awareness, while nut butter takes up the same percentage. Butter and cream cheese are also popular choices.


10. When comparing honey and sugar, sugar only wins over honey in convenience and familiarity.

(National Honey Board)

Consumers prefer honey over sugar because it’s healthy (33%), natural (28%), sustainable (27%), and unprocessed (27%).

In addition to that, honey holds a strong advantage over maple syrup when it comes to health (26%), locally produced (20%), and unprocessed (18%) attributes.

Honey wins over both sugar and maple syrup on flavor, versatility, and value.


Honey in American Menus Statistics

11. While the COVID-19 pandemic has caused honey to fall in menu mentions slightly, it remains to be a ubiquitous flavor on 59% of menus.

(National Honey Board)

Honey remains to be widely featured on the menu in many casual and fine dining restaurants in the United States. American food operators in various segments, especially fine dining restaurants, took drastic measures to streamline their menus during the pandemic.

Although all industries were affected to varying degrees, all signs show that food trends are starting to bounce back as the food industry continues to recover.


12. Among all channels, honey had the highest menu penetration in fine and casual dining, at 67.3% and 67.1%, respectively.

(National Honey Board)

Over the past four years, the demand for honey across various channels has significantly increased. However, it shows the highest penetration in casual dining, fine dining, and chain restaurants.

Although quick service restaurants or fast-food restaurants show the least presence of honey on their menu (48%), they showed the highest growth at 7% over four years.


13. At 32%, American cuisine features the largest presence of honey on its menu.

(National Honey Board)

Sandwiches, pizza, and burgers are among the top American cuisines that feature honey as one of their ingredients.

Additionally, honey has also made a strong presence in various cuisines that are beyond American eats, such as Italian (6.7%), Chinese (5.6%), and Mexican (4.2%).


14. For many years, honey has been used more as an ingredient in food than beverages.

(National Honey Board)

The average number of beverages on menus where honey is used hasn’t changed from 2010; it remains at 1.9.

However, when it comes to food items on menus, honey is used in an average of 3.1 dishes as of 2020, showing a nearly 11% increase from 2010, when it was used in 2.8 dishes on average.


15. Honey took a 7.7% share of introduction for sauces and seasonings in 2020.

(National Honey Board)

Honey is one of the sauces that has increased in growth over the past four years. Many food operators use honey as an important ingredient in creating dynamic sauces to add more flavor to a variety of dishes.

In the food industry, honey has different uses—emulsify sauces and dips, complement the sweetness in salads, glaze meat and vegetables, and balance out the savory flavor in dishes.


16. Entrées are where honey is featured most on menus.

(National Honey Board)

Although its mentions in the entrée of a menu have slightly declined from 2019 to 2021, it continued to capture 46.5% of the menu.

Honey is more likely to be featured in many entrées than in beverages. Among the top applications of honey in entrée dishes include the main chicken entrée (6.3%) and salad entrée (5%).


17. The usage of honey in non-alcoholic beverages and side dishes has increased in the past two years.

(National Honey Board)

From 2019 to 2021, there has been positive growth in the mention of honey in side dishes (8.8% versus 10.1%) and non-alcoholic beverages (5.4% versus 6.7%). On the other hand, it declined in mentions in entrées, desserts, appetizers, and alcoholic beverages.


18. 32.5% of dishes on dinner menus include honey.

(National Honey Board)

The use of honey in dinner menus slightly increased in 2021, showing a 4-year growth of 17%. On the other hand, the mentions of honey in both breakfast and lunch menus have decreased.


19. In 2020, chicken dishes are the top dishes that feature honey.

(Nation Honey Board)

This increase is brought about by the popularity of chicken and waffles and fried chicken. Based on the 4-year growth of trending dishes, fried chicken sandwich tops the list at +142%, while buttermilk chicken ranks behind at +84%, and chicken and waffles tied third at +83%.


Global Honey Consumption Statistics

20. The latest available data shows that 1.8 million tonnes of honey were consumed worldwide.


When it comes to honey, the world can’t seem to get enough of it, and it showed in this statistic in 2015. From 2007 to 2015, there has been a more than 20% increase in honey consumption. In 2017, the worldwide consumption was only 1.5 million tonnes.

Worldwide, honey is used in more than just food. It’s also a key ingredient in skincare products like lip balm, cleansers, face masks, and conditioners. It can also be used in candles.


21. Europe is the top consumer of honey, consuming over 20% of the world’s total in 2013.


While Germany is the leading market for honey, it represents 23% (or about 85,000 tonnes) of the total honey consumption in Europe. Other top honey consumers are the UK (12%), France (10%), Spain (8%), and Poland (7%).

Despite producing more than 30 varieties of honey, Italy consumed the least amount of honey.


22. About 25% of consumed honey in Europe is used as a food ingredient.


Innovative products with new flavors have captured the interest of many European consumers in recent years.

While honey may not be an innovative ingredient, there are still many European food and drink operators that use honey to innovate products like cereals, ready-to-drink beverages, and salty-sweet snacks.


23. The Central African Republic consumes 9.62 grams of honey per day, making it the top honey-consuming country.


While the Central African Republic ranked fourth in the list of African countries that produced the most honey (16,200 tonnes in 2020), it has the highest daily per capita honey consumption in the world.

Honey is widely used as a natural sweetener in dishes. The Bakaya people, a pygmy community, are experts in harvesting honey.


24. New Zealand ranks behind the Central African Republic, consuming 5.55 grams of honey per capita per day.


Although New Zealand ranked 10th globally among the top honey-producing countries, it is second in terms of the daily honey consumption per capita. Also, New Zealand is the chief global producer of Manuka honey, an expensive type of honey that offers a variety of health benefits.

Various research has been conducted to study its components to understand its medicinal properties better. From 2006 to 2016, the number of beehives has significantly increased, which shows the growing demand for honey both domestically and internationally.


25. In Asia-Pacific, China dominates in the production and consumption of honey, consuming about 300,000 metric tonnes per year.


In addition to its vast land, China has a rich nectar source and a large population that play a crucial role in its ever-growing domestic honey production.

In addition to being a major global honey producer, China is among the largest honey consumers in the world, consuming more than 75% of its annual yield. Its annual growth rate of raw honey consumption is between 5% to 10%.

China’s honey consumption per capita has increased from 0.11 kilograms in 2011 to 0.3 kilograms in 2012. Health awareness increased income, and product diversification contributed to its growing honey consumption demand.


Honey Demand, Production, and Sales

26. In 2020, honey demand in the US was at 571 million pounds, up by 8% from the previous year.


From 1986 to 2020, the annual average growth rate of honey demand in the US was 9.7 million pounds.

In the same period, the growth trend in honey demand per capita is approximately 0.016 pounds every year, increasing from about 0.8 to 1.3 pounds. It signifies an increase in the demand of about 0.5 pounds per person over 35 years. Additionally, the calculated trend from 2009 to 2020 is much higher at 0.04 pounds per American consumer.

The growth rate in honey demand and consumption clearly indicates the increased attention of customers to food products they consider healthier.


27. The production of honey in the US declined by 24% in 2021.

(Bee Culture)

The total honey production in the United States was only 126 million pounds, with only 2.7 million honey-producing colonies, which was slightly lower than 2020. Each colony yielded an average of 46.9 pounds, down 14% from the 54.5 pounds generated in the previous year.

Furthermore, producer honey stocks generated in December 2021 were down 41% versus 2020.


28. The prices of honey in the United States increased by 21% from 2020 to 2021.

(Bee Culture)

The US honey prices rose from $2.10 per pound in 2020 to $2.54 per pound in 2021.

Portions of the honey sold in the market through private, cooperatives, and retail channels are reflected in the US and State level prices. The costs of each color class were determined by the measurement of the qualities sold for each marketing channel.


29. The retail sales of honey were down by 5.1% from 2020 to 2021.

(National Honey Board)

The unit sales and volume of honey slipped compared to 2020, declining by 7.4% and 8.7%, respectively.

Between brand honey and private label, the former continued to surpass the latter in retail sales in 2021. While the sales of branded honey decreased by 2.3%, its counterpart was down by 8.5%. As a result, the dollar sales of private labels declined from 48% in 2015 to 42.5% in 2021.

Additionally, raw honey represented 34% of total volume in 2021, which was slightly lower by just 0.7% compared to 2020, while processed honey was down by 12.3%.


Related Questions (FAQs)

How much honey is consumed globally?

The total volume of honey consumed in the world is 1.8 million tonnes. This figure is set to increase year over year due to the increased awareness of honey as a healthier sweetener. Aside from its uses in food and beverages, honey is also used in skincare items.


What country consumes the most honey?

In terms of honey consumption per capita, the Central African Republic is at the top of the list, with each person consuming as much as 9.62 grams of honey per day. Next on the list is New Zealand, with a per capita daily consumption of 5.55 grams.


How much honey does the average person eat in a year?

Currently, there are no global figures as to how much honey a person eats per year. However, in the United States, as of 2021, each person consumes an average of 1.4 pounds of honey each year, which is equivalent to 2 grams a day.


Is it unethical to consume honey?

Consuming honey isn’t necessarily ethical, especially since more people are becoming mindful of the decreasing bee population and choosing to consume organic and sustainably produced honey. As a result, this gives the beekeepers a chance to keep bees thriving and healthy for future generations.


Is honey in high demand?

Globally, there’s a growing demand for honey. Since the global impact of COVID-19, honey has caused a significant demand shock. From 2022 to 2030, the honey market value is expected to increase at a CAGR of 5.2%. Organic honey is predicted to have a higher CAGR of 5.5%.


Is honey healthier than sugar?

There is minimal difference between sugar and honey regarding calorie and sugar content. However, honey has proven antioxidant, antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and antifungal properties.



Overall, honey consumption statistics show that honey is a popular product around the world. People enjoy eating honey for its sweet taste and many health benefits including its ability to boost energy levels, help with weight loss, and improve skin and hair health.

While there is some concern about the sugar content in honey, overall it seems to be a healthy product that people will continue to consume in large quantities.

Additionally, honey is produced by bees, which are important pollinators. By increasing your consumption of honey, you can help support the bee population.

We hope that this article has given you a better understanding of how popular honey is and how it is consumed. With so many different types of honey available, there’s sure to be a flavor that everyone can enjoy.

So next time you’re looking for a sweet treat, make sure to reach for some honey!

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