Sweetness and the Acidity of Honey

Is Honey Sweeter than Sugar?

Fructose is slightly sweeter than sucrose. Glucose is less sweet and maltose (made up of two glucose units) is even less sweet. In most honeys fructose predominates and tends to make honey slightly sweeter than sugar. Some honeys are very rich in fructose and as such are very sweet, whilst others exist where glucose is the dominant sugar.

Acidity of Honey

Honey contains a number of acids including free amino acids and organic acids. The average pH of honey is 3.9, with a typical pH range being 3.4 to 6.1. The low pH of honey inhibits the presence and growth of microorganisms. 

About 18 amino acids are known to exist in honey, with proline being the most common. However the amounts are very low and therefore have little nutritional significance.

Honey also contains a range of aliphatic and aromatic acids. The aromatic acids in honey are important contributors to the flavour and aroma.