Organic Honey
What's the Catch?

The quality of an organic honey depends on where it is produced. How to make sure you get best quality for your money.

Are you looking to improving your diet? Are you considering turning to local foods and away from chemicals and preservatives?

Organic Honey

There are a lot of food products that claim to be organically raised. Most of consumers are familiar with the basic requirements of the organic labeling.

For plants and livestock to be organic the product must be raised without the addition of hormones, genetically engineered seeds, pesticides or herbicides that are believed to be of risk to human consumption.

These guidelines are usually enforced by a governmental agency that perform inspections and require the farmers to keep very specific journals of their farming techniques.

Rural is Better

A bee’s flying range is four to six miles from the hive location. In order for honey to be truly organic the beehives must be placed in isolated areas with in that range of miles from the dense population, industry, traffic congestion, and farm fields treated with chemicals and landfills.

Even in the settings of rural living it is hard to locate the beehives out of touch with vehicle exhaust, roadside spraying or nearby homes that may use a bug spray around their homes.

The average honeybee travels from the home hive to gather pollen. Farmers have yet learned how to instruct the honeybees as to which flowers are free from chemicals and which are contaminated!

Raw is Better

How the honey is treated once it is harvested from the apiary is also vital to the honey holding its nutritional properties.

Honey that is pasteurized – exposed to high heat and filtered, is striped of many of the beneficial nutrients and enzymes. Truly raw honeys do not deteriorate with age, but like fine wines, continue to age and develop into more complex tastes.

In today’s market place the consumer can find local honey being sold at farmer’s markets and produce stands. They can talk with the beekeepers and discuss their beekeeping practices with them. The consumer needs to ask:

  • Have these bees been treated with pesticides to free their bees of mites?

  • Do they use antibiotics on their bees?

  • How has the honey been treated after harvest?

What Organic Honey Mean

Consumers need to be aware of how realistic it is in their specific areas to truly have pure organic honey be available. In the majority of areas this is not a realistic goal. That does not mean give up on the consumption of locally raised honeys.

Bees are very useful in nature as flower pollinators, and as a side job, they produce lots of good products for us, like honey, beeswax, pollen, and royal jelly. Honey has been found to have medicinal qualities, particularly when applied topically to burns, wounds, and ulcers.

The bottom line is Consumer Beware – buy your honey from the beekeepers in your area that you have become familiar with. Visit their farms if possible and see how they raise their bees.

Do not be afraid to ask questions, a true steward of the earth and food-chain will have nothing to hide and more than likely be happy to explain their farming practices to you!

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