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Public Statements

Issue Position: The Honey and the Beekeepers

Issue Position

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Last year a regulation came through from DHEC (our state version of the EPA). It gave the SC Department of Agriculture the ability to inspect anyone who processes food. Tom Corbin saw this as an overreach and proceeded to stop it. This bill had implications to regulate any homemaker who caters as a hobby. But the citizens who were most apprehensive about this regulation were our state beekeepers.

The beekeepers were concerned that this regulation would force them to build a separate free standing kitchen to jar up their honey, a honey house that would cost as much as $25,000. Corbin's common sense let him to conclude that obvious: beekeepers don't process honey; bees do. Pouring the honey into a jar is not processing honey.

Seeing this as nothing but big government, more regulations and road blocks for small businesses, Tom Corbin continued his research on this matter. It turns out that South Carolina classifies honey as a processed food and at the same time he discovered that South Carolina does not regulate "raw product."

Representative Corbin proceeded to introduce a bill changing the classification of honey from a processed food to a raw product, thus deregulating the beekeepers and easing the burden on these small businesses. Consequently, Tom Corbin was invited to speak at the state beekeepers convention, where he was thanked for keeping his word and truly working for small business and true government reform. This is the common sense and business acumen that Tom Corbin brings to the citizens he represents and to the State of South Carolina.


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