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Honey!

 By Priya Blaise

Honey!

By Priya Blaise


     You're outside playing at the park when suddenly a bee lands on you. You are just about to try to kill it when it flies away. The bee has more important things to do than to sting you because it has to make honey. A honey bee flies over 55,000 miles to get to 2 million flowers just to make 1 pound of honey. That means that in a honey bee's lifetime it can only make about 1/12 teaspoon of honey.

Playing at the Park

1. Does honey go bad?

a. Yes

b. No

c. It can if it is not stored properly

d. It will crystallize but it is still edible

 

d., After some time is will crystalize but if you heat it up, then it will go back to its former state.

2. How much surplus honey does an average colony make per year?

 

a. 60lb

b. 30lb

c. 25lb

d. 20lb

 

c,  This might not seem like a lot but keep in mind that it takes the bee 55,000 miles to make one pound. 

      You have probably had honey in your tea or in different snacks or cough drops. Honey probably added some sweetness to what you were eating. You might think that you know  lot about honey but, let's see how much you really know with a honey quiz

Honey Quiz!

     Technology finally improved in the mid-nineteenth century, when a man named Lorenzo Langstroth designed the Langstroth hive, a hive that we still use today. The Langstroth hive has removable frames so you don’t have to break the comb out of the hive and kill many bees. This was a big improvement because we didn't have to go out and catch a swarm every time we harvested honey.

 

     You might be thinking, how old is honey? Well, honey is very old food, it is about 20 million years old! But, humans did not start to harvest honey until about 8,000 years ago. We had to climb up a tree and knock the hive down, destroying it. This was risky because they could get stung many times and even die from falling off a tree.

 

Honey History

     Then 3,000 years later ancient Egyptians made the first beehive out of cylinders of clay. They were the first people to domesticate bees and make beehives. This was a better method than hunting for the honey but, it would still ruin the bee colony when they took out the honey comb.

     Each type of honey can be good for a specific thing. Avocado honey has a very dark color and a strong, rich taste. It is usually used in dressings and sauces. Orange Blossom honey has a combination of different “citrusy honey” and orange blossom honey. This can be used in baking or for everyday use. The most common type of honey in the USA is clover honey. This an “all-purpose” honey so it can be used for many things. Clover honey has a sweet taste and flowery smell.

 

 

     There are over 300 types of honey in the USA. Honey gets its different flavor from the type of flowers the bees get the nectar from. Honey with a light color will not have a strong flavor compared to a darker colored honey.

 

Types of Honey

      Raw honey usually has only a little filtering so it will still have bee pollen. Bee pollen is made of 40% protein and it has good nutritional value. It gives energy and helps with allergies. It also has amino acids which kids need. If you want to buy the most healthy honey then you should buy organic raw honey.   

Raw Honey and Fake Honey

      Most honey at the grocery store is fake honey. Fake honey has no bee pollen and it has many added ingredients like sugar syrup, corn syrup, and glucose. They have also filtered all of the nutrients and healthy parts out. Fake honey is very unhealthy and has no benefits.    

From growrealfood.com

     Do you think that all bees can make honey? Wrong! Only some bees make it! The most common bee to make honey is a honey bee. Most bees only eat pollen but honey bees eat pollen and honey. The reason bees make honey is so they can eat it over the long winter and honey gives them a lot of energy to fly for miles. Honeybees are on every continent except Antarctica.

 

Where Does Honey Come From?

With 2 tablespoons of honey a bee can fly around the world!

Worker bees can visit 50 to 100 flowers before she has to return to the hive carrying nectar and pollen that is almost half her weight.

     How is honey made? The simple answer is, bees make it. Honey bees go from flower to flower gathering nectar with their tongue and keep it in their honey stomach. Don’t worry, the honey stomach is separate from the normal food stomach. When the honey stomach is full, they fly back to the hive and empty of the nectar to an empty honeycomb cell. Worker bees will fan the nectar with their wings to evaporate some of the water and then put a wax seal on the cells to preserve it.

How Honey is Made

      There are many ways to produce honey but, the most common way in the USA is using an extractor. Beekeepers keep honeybees in hives with removable frames. In the fall, they will remove some of the surplus honey out of the hive by taking the frames out. Then they will cut the wax capping off with a knife. They then put the frames in a machine called an extractor which uses centrifugal force to get the honey out of the wax cells. Then take the honey out of the extractor and put it into bottles.

 

How Honey is Produced

      Way to produce honey is with the honey still in the comb.  They will take out the honey, and then cut the honeycomb away from the frame. This way uses no filtering and this is a good example of raw honey.

Ancient Egyptians and Honey

      For ancient egyptian, honey was a big part of their cultural and religious ceremonies. They kept beehives in many temples and gave honey to the gods as an offering. To them is was “the food of gods”. Even though they had honey from the hives, they liked wild honey better. Honey was also used for medical purposes. They put honey on their wound and mixed sesame honey and milk for breathing problems.

  

      In ancient Greece, they had a drink called mead was a mix of honey and water. Honey was also called ambrosia. Like the Egyptians they believed that this was the “food of the gods”.  Some famous people even got had their “lips touched in honey” to make them “sweet as honey”. They also used honey in a lot of their medical treatments. They mixed honey and vinegar for a pain killer.

Honey in Ancient Greece

      In Judaism, they called Israel the land of milk and honey. Also when children start to learn the Torah, they will put some honey on the Hebrew letters and then have them lick it so they will think of sweetness while learning the Torah. They would also dip apples in honey for Rosh HaShanah so that the new year will be sweet.

 

Honey in Judaism

      Honey can be eaten in many ways. You can just eat a spoon full of it by itself or you can add it to smoothies to give an extra “pop” of sweetness. Honey also taste great with bread, crackers, and muffins. Replace sugar with honey for a healthier alternative.

 

Honey as a Snack

      Honey has many benefits. One of them is that it is great for skin care. Honey is a  “humectant” which means it can keep in moisture so, it is used in many lotions and creams to help hydrate skin. It can also be a cleanser because it will open up pores and heal acne.

 

      Honey is also excellent for energy. It has a lot of carbohydrates which is the main fuel for muscle. Eating a tablespoon before and during exercises and workouts can help by giving some extra energy. Be careful, don’t have too much honey because it does have a lot of sugars.  

 

Benefits of Honey

Recipe with Honey

Mix Milk Honey and eggs. Add baking mix and stir until moistened. Put into greased muffin tins. Bake at 400f for 20-18 mins. 

 

Recipe from honey.com

http://www.honey.com/recipes/detail/6/easy-honey-muffins 

1/2 cup milk

1/4 cup honey

1 egg

2 1/2 cups buttermilk baking mix 

Honey muffins

Ulmo Honey is usually used for antibiotic purposes.

Chile, Ulmo Honey

Honey Around the World

Thyme Honey has a light amber-ish color and has a lot of pollen in it.

Greece, Thyme Honey

Sidr Honey is one of the most expensive honeys in the world. Just one jar could cost up to $140!

Yemen, Sidr Honey

      The first thing you should know about beekepping is that bees take a lot of work and time to take care of. You should make sure that the people in your neighborhood are okay with bees and that they wouldn't be bothered by them. Also, it is better to have two beehives instead of one so make sure you have space for them. Even though beekeeping to be hard there are many things that you can harvest from the bees like pollen, beeswax and of course honey.

      To start your beehives you should first order a Langstroth beehive starter kit. This will have everything you need to start one hive and gear for beekeeping. You should then order you second hive. Then find a place where you want to put them. They should be raised off the ground a little and on a flat surface. Then you can add the hive stand and the bottom board on top. Put one deep hive box and then add in the frames. Put the inner cover on top and then an outer cover on top. Repeat this process with the other hive. 

Starting Your Own Beehive

      To get your bees you should order packaged bees. To add the bees into the hive remove three frames from the middle. Then take out the can of sugar-water. Lift the metal wire to remove the queen. Check to see if she is alive. If the queen is dead then you should order another queen. If she is alive then you can set her to the side. Turn the container over and then shake the bees into the middle of the hive. Pull out the cork on the queen cage and place her in the hive with the screen facing down. Cover the hive again and repeat with the other hive. 

      Leave the hive alone for at least eight days, then check on the bees by taking off the covers and removing a frame from the middle to see if the queen is laying eggs. If she is laying eggs then your hive is coming along fine. If she is not, then check to see if you can find the queen. If she is missing or dead then you need to buy another queen. If one hive is doing better than the other, then you can transfer some brood and honey to the weaker hive. When the first box is full then you can add another box on top of it.