Making honey
Making honey

All about honey > Making honey

Did you know that bees must tap 2,000,000 flowers to produce just one pound of honey? And while everyone's aware of the work bees do to provide us with delicious sweet honey, we shouldn't forget the essential role they play in agriculture. Approximately 80% of crop insect pollination is done by honey bees. Some crops are 90% dependent on honey bee pollination, while others, such as almonds, rely completely on bees' assistance to produce fruit.

The bee colony is headed by a single queen bee. Male drones are there solely to mate with the queen, while the worker bees, up to 50,000 of them, do the rest of the work, including feeding the queen, guarding the hive, and collecting nectar. During one collection trip, a bee might visit 50-100 blooms, and communicates the direction and distance of her find to coworkers by "dancing."

Nectar is the sweet liquid that bees collect from flowers. The liquid found in the cells of the hive, which has been digested in the bee's honey stomach, is already honey. At this stage, it still contains a lot of water, a large part of which will evaporate. The honey that we eat is the liquid that has been concentrated by evaporation. Once the honey is made, the bees close up the cell with a thin layer of wax to prevent the honey from fermenting.

The colour and flavour of honey depend on the nectar source. Honey can range from almost colourless and very mild in taste, to dark brown with a bold flavour. Among common honey floral varieties in the US are alfalfa, avocado, blueberry, buckwheat, clover, eucalyptus, fireweed, orange blossom, sage and tupelo.


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