Originally Posted by saramc
-----snip----- Mead is stabilized via the same method as wine (k-meta vs k-meta plus sorbate if backsweetening) though some feel that the addition of SO2 is not required due to the properties which honey brings to the table, err bottle.
But it's usually recommended to use both, as the presence of the sulphites stops the possibility of the production of geraniols - as the MLF bacteria can't "operate" (metabolise the sorbate) in environments of more than about 20 ppm - whereas the addition of sulphites i.e. one crushed campden tablet per gallon gives about 50 ppm of sulphites.
Either way, once it's racked again a time or two, just adding further sulphites every second racking is for it's preservative property, but the first addition (presuming 3 rackings for clarity reasons) will have dissipated and have less effect on the flavours from the honey.
Plus, don't forget, using K-meta which is what seems to be usually used in the US and by the pro wine makers, has a lesser affect on flavours - whereas here sulphites are generally Na-meta which can definitely affect flavours if used incorrectly/over done.