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Thread: Organic Honey

  1. Default Organic Honey

    After spotting a tub of organic honey at the shop it got me to wondering;

    When honey is made from crops like citrus or lucerne that are sprayed pretty heavily for all manner of reasons, what is the probability of getting any of that nastiness in the honey?

    For that matter couldn't all honey be sold as organic?


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Brisbane Australia

    Default Re: Organic Honey

    The organic honey I have come across, was from an "uninhabited" Island, where there was a guarantee of no chemicals, crops, etc, just purley native trees.

    It is also a good gimmick to charge more for the honey. Mind you, the cost of travel for the bee keeper is also higher

  3. Default Re: Organic Honey

    So what do ya reckon, I'm no organic chemist (nor any other sort) would it be possible for bees to transfer nasties from their foraging to the hive?

    If it is, it makes sense to try to select honey varieties that would have less exposure to sprays.

    In the local honey shop the Lucerne and orange blossom (I'm guessing) would be the most likely to have potential contaminants, while things like meadow, redgum, teatree etc would be the least likely.

    Being a fellow Aussie have you made Mead from a eucalypt based honey - not sure I would be partial to sipping on a drink that tasted like a cough lolly.


  4. Default Re: Organic Honey

    As a beekeeper, the term organic honey (IMO) only means that the beekeeper does not use man-made poisons/chemicals in the treatment of his bees. There is a lot of debate about the use of food grade mineral oil and still claiming organic status.

    If the bees are working crops that have been sprayed - chances are those bees are dead.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Cedar Rapids, IA

    Default Re: Organic Honey

    There are a lot of nasties besides pesticides that would not kill a bee that could end up in the honey. Out here in Iowa, we have a lot of concerns with nitrogens and phosphates from fertilizers. Not sure what those would do to honey. Maybe make it so you didn't have to add nutrients...

  6. Default Re: Organic Honey

    JohnBeeMan - never thought that they used chemicals in mangement of bees.

    What do they use the mineral oil for?


  7. #7

    Default Re: Organic Honey

    There are 2 types of parasitic mites that attack honeybees, chemicals/pesticides are used to control these.
    Bees can also pick up any pesticides, herbicides, fertilizers or whatever has been sprayed on the flowers that they visit.

  8. Default Re: Organic Honey

    Mineral oil is for mite control.

    Chemical use in the management of bees is very common, especially with the advent of the mite epidemic. I had a hard time finding any info on non-chemical means.

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