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Colour, antioxidant capacity, phenolic and flavonoid content of honey from the Humid Chaco Region, Argentina

Cabrera M1, M Perez2, L Gallez3,4, A Andrada3, G Balbarrey3

1 Facultad de Humanidades. Universidad Nacional de Formosa. Formosa, Argentina.
2 INQUISUR, Dpto. de Química. Universidad Nacional del Sur (UNS)-Conicet, Bahía Blanca, Argentina.
3 Dpto. Agronomía, Universidad Nacional del Sur (UNS), Bahía Blanca - Argentina.
4 CIC (Comisión de Investigaciones Científicas, Provincia de Buenos Aires, Argentina)

Address correspondence to: Mg. Liliana Gallez, Fax, +54-291-4595127, Phone, +54-291-4595102, e-mail:

Phyton-International Journal of Experimental Botany 2017, 86(all), 124-130.


Our objective was to correlate colour with total phenolic compounds, total flavonoids and antioxidant capacity of honey from the Humid Chaco region. With this purpose, 19 representative samples were selected from the 2009-2012 year period. Pollen analysis showed a predominance of native species of different landscapes such as forests and wetlands. Of the total number of samples, eleven were mixed or multifloral and eight samples were dominated by different native nectariferous woody species. The colour of honey, according to the Pfund scale, ranged from extra light amber to dark amber. Total phenolic content ranged from 40.18 to 118.82 mg GAE/100 g honey. Flavonoid content varied between 6.94 and 67.76 mg QE/100 g honey, and antioxidant capacity, evaluated by the DPPH radical method, between 17.36% and 56.53%. Extra light and light amber honeys had lower levels of total phenolic compounds, total flavonoids, and antioxidant capacity than amber and dark honeys. The correlation observed between colour and flavonoids (r=0.78) was higher than that between colour and total phenols (r=0.53). A direct relationship between phenolic content and antioxidant capacity (r=0.91) was found. The studied honeys, as compared to honeys from other regions, were rich in flavonoids and show a noticeable antioxidant activity. It is important to take into account these features for human health.


Cite This Article

M, C., Perez, M., Gallez, L., Andrada, A., Balbarrey, G. (2017). Colour, antioxidant capacity, phenolic and flavonoid content of honey from the Humid Chaco Region, Argentina. Phyton-International Journal of Experimental Botany, 86(all), 124–130.


This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License , which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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