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French Bees Producing Colored Honey by Eating M&Ms

Although some might think multicolored honey is a sweet idea, the proud beekeepers of Ribeauville, France, disagree.

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Blue and green honey? Mon dieu! Sounds like a fun, marketable product. But not to beekeepers in the town of Ribeauville, in northeastern France. France has tough standards for honey production. French honey must have standard coloration (nearly colorless to dark brown), and must come from the nectar of plants. So when the Ribeauville bees starting producing colorful versions of their sweetener, the beekeepers weren't happy [source: Andries].

An investigation ensued, and the beekeepers discovered the culprit: a neighboring biogas factory. The plant was processing colored M&Ms, and storing the sweet waste material outside and in uncovered containers. That lured the Ribeauville bees from their hives 2.5 miles (4 kilometers) away, and they promptly began pigging out on the sugary remains. Next thing you know, blue and green honey [source: Andries].

Employees at the waste-processing plant cleaned the outdoor and uncovered containers, then moved all remains into a covered hall [source: Andries]. A bummer for the bees, most likely.

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