How to choose natural honey? Beekeeper tips
Honey has a mass of healing properties, because of which this product is eaten even by those who do not like it. Since the price of honey is quite high, often instead of a quality natural product they sell us a fake. How to choose honey, distinguishing the present delicacy from counterfeit, we will tell in our article.
Honey is a substance derived from flower nectar that has been processed by the enzymes of bee saliva and matured in wax cells. Containing vitamins B, E and C, as well as folic acid, it:
- strengthens the immune system;
- speeds up the metabolism;
- improves eyesight;
- stimulates blood formation;
- dilates blood vessels;
- normalizes nervous activity.
Natural phytoncides that are part of honey, determine its bactericidal action.
See more about the benefits of honey in the video:
Ways to fake honey
There are several ways to fake honey, and one of the most common is feeding bees with sugar.In order to facilitate the task of bees and speed up the process of honey-making, beekeepers often feed sugar-bearing medal workers into sugar beetle. The result is a product that resembles the appearance of honey, but does not possess its useful qualities.
Sometimes bees are generally excluded from the process of “honey-making”. In other words, they simply boil a mass that resembles Winnie the Pooh's favorite delicacy, their sugar and water, adding some aromatic oil (for example, roses or acacias) and small pieces of honeycombs. Needless to say that the benefits of such a brew - zero, only one harm.
To increase the volume of honey, it adds various impurities - starch, flour, chalk. Such a product, unlike a natural product that has been stored for years, will not last long. Yes, and pay for such a surrogate is unlikely anyone wants.
There are three more types of low-quality honey, which, despite the fact that it is not a fake, it is better not to buy:
- immature. Being in comb, honey matures - excess water evaporates from it, after which it can be stored for years without losing its beneficial properties. However, sometimes in pursuit of quick profits, beekeepers start pumping honey ahead of time. Such a product quickly begins to ferment and disappears;
- padevyWhen the bees lack the floral nectar, they collect the sweet excretions of aphids and honeydew. The result is a substance that does not have the smell and taste of its nectaric fellow. The shelf life of honeydew honey is short and it has been used only in the confectionery industry;
- heat treated. Often sellers, wanting to give last year’s candied honey for fresh, heat it. After heat treatment, it really becomes liquid and viscous, but loses most of its useful properties.
How to check honey for naturalness?
You have three senses that allow you to identify a fake at the time of purchase and choose honey without impurities. First, the smell. Aromanatural honeycan not be confused with anything. If the substance that you offer, does not smell or has a faint, unexpressed smell, then you risk to buy either a sugar syrup, or a product of processing of bees that were artificially fed.
Secondly, taste. Real honey is sweet, a bit tart with a slight sourness. After him, the language remains a kind of aftertaste, which is not in counterfeit products.
Third, sight. Natural product must be transparent. The presence of sediment indicates the presence of additives in it.Too light coloring often indicates immaturity, and whitish color means that they want to sell you syrup.
By the way, do not be afraid of candied product - this is one of the signs of naturalness. No type of honey, be it May, buckwheat, lime, etc., does not retain its original texture for a long time. Within a couple of months, crystallization begins, which, by the way, does not at all affect the usefulness of this product.
Such manipulations will help you choose honey:
- dip a piece of bread into the honey for 8-10 minutes. If, after extraction, it will be hard, congratulations, you have a natural product. A softened crumb means one thing - they are trying to sell you a syrup;
- put a drop of honey on the paper and rub it, and then write something on it with a chemical pencil. The blue sign will indicate the presence of flour or starch in the honey. The same effect gives a drop of iodine, changing the color to blue;
- Dissolve some honey in plain water, and then add a few drops of vinegar to it. The chemical reaction that has begun will show whether there is chalk in the solution.
Where to buy and how to store?
Where canchoose honeycharacterized by good quality? The ideal option is to find a beekeeper who will become your regular supplier.Ask around for other lovers of sweet treats, walk around the market, visit honey fairs. We think in the end you will find an honest seller. But where you should not buy this product is:
- in supermarkets. Trying to give a marketable appearance, such honey is heated, thereby destroying the healing properties;
- in natural markets. Find a seller then, in order to return the poor quality goods, will be very problematic;
- Roma and grandmothers. The first never engaged in beekeeping, specializing in a completely different field of business, and the second later in the afternoon with fire will not find, if you suddenly remain dissatisfied with the purchase.
But to choose honey is not enough, he needs to provide conditions for proper storage. Use a glass dish, tightly closed lid (honey well absorbs odors). Choose a cool (optimal temperature from 5 ° C to 20 ° C) dark place, and then it will stand for 10 years!