Frequently Asked Questions

There are anecdotal stories of people claiming relief from allergies by eating local honey, but we are not aware of any scientific evidence to support these claims. This subject is somewhat controversial, since some experts claim that the kinds of pollens that are the greatest cause of allergies are smaller windblown pollens that are not typically found in honey. This topic is also covered on the website of the American Academy of Allergy Asthma & Immunology.
Honey may contain clostridium botulinum spores that can cause infant botulism, a rare but serious disease that affects the nervous system of young babies under one year old. C botulinum spores are present throughout the environment and may be found in dust, soil and improperly canned foods. Adults and children over one year of age are routinely exposed to, but not normally affected by C. botulinum spores. Honey is safe to consume during pregnancy and lactation. While infants are susceptible to the infant botulism, adults, including pregnant females are not. The concern for babies stems from the fact that infants lack the fully developed gastrointestinal tract of older humans. Since the mother is not in danger of developing this condition, the unborn baby is protected.

When substituting honey for granulated sugar in recipes, begin by substituting honey for up to half of the sugar called for in the recipe.

For baked goods

  • Make sure to reduce the oven temperature by 25 degrees to prevent over browning
  • For each cup of honey used:
    • Reduce any liquid called for by ¼ cup.
    • Add ½ teaspoon baking soda.

Because of its high fructose content, honey has higher sweetening power than sugar. This means you can use less honey than sugar to achieve the desired sweetness.

Honey is made by honeybees from the nectar of flowers and plants, not pollen. Pollen is actually an accidental guest in honey, brought back by bees as a source of food for the baby bees. The amount of pollen in honey is minuscule and not enough to impact the nutrient value of honey. Honey is still honey, even without pollen.
Honey stored in sealed containers can remain stable for decades and even centuries! However, honey is susceptible to physical and chemical changes during storage; it tends to darken and lose its aroma and flavor or crystallize. Properly processed, packaged and stored honey retains its quality for a long time.
The National Honey Board defines raw honey as "Honey as it exists in the beehive or as obtained by extraction, settling or straining without adding heat."
Honey comes in many colors and flavors. These are called honey varietals and they are determined by the types of flowers the bees visited for nectar. Some are light and sweet; others are dark and bold. Pick the honey you like and enjoy!

Crystallization is the natural process by which the glucose in the honey precipitates out of the liquid honey. Different varieties of honey will crystallize at different rates, and a few not at all.

If your honey crystallizes, simply place the honey jar in warm water and stir until the crystals dissolve; or place the honey in a microwave-safe container with the lid off and microwave, stirring every 30 seconds, until the crystals dissolve. Be careful not to boil or scorch the honey.

Also keep in mind that you can eat the honey in a crystallized form. Just scoop out of the jar and spread it on your toast or drop it in your tea!