April 2, 2015

What is Raw Honey?

honey harvest

We receive a lot of questions about what makes raw honey so special, and we think the answers are pretty interesting. Feel free to chime in on the conversation; we love to hear from you!

How Temperature Defines Raw Honey
The official definition of raw honey is a little loose.  Basically, raw refers to the fact that it hasn't been heated to the point of pasteurization. To understand what that really means, it’s important to first recognize what happens inside a beehive. When honeybees are at work, their collective body temperature rises and consequently warms their work area and the surrounding honey. The temperature of an active hive is about 95ºF and the enzymes in honey that give it the nutritional and beneficial qualities are alive. As long as the temperature of honey does not considerably rise past 95ºF, the honey is considered raw.

freshly poured honey

Photo courtesy of Lovers Lane Farm

Straining Raw honey Versus Filtering
When honey is harvested from the comb by a separator, it leaves behind the large portions of beeswax. When the mainly-honey substance is strained, little bits of beeswax are further removed. This process is called straining, and the result is called “pure honey”. It is clear and golden liquid that will be bottled and labeled “raw honey”. Filtering, on the other hand, removes significantly smaller particles, namely pollen, and the honey is that much further removed from its raw status.

bee on rosemary flower

Capay Organic Bee on Rosemary

We take pride in the raw and delicious honey that we offer and hope you enjoy knowing a little bit more about why its so special.

How To Add Raw Honey to Your Delivery:
CSA members - head on over to our online Farm Stand Market to customize your upcoming delivery. Market is open from noon on Thursday until 10 am, 2 days before your scheduled delivery day. After you confirm your produce items, click the orange button "Confirm and Continue To Other Farm Products" to add the products to your delivery.