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Author Topic: Is this honey diseased?  (Read 1142 times)

Offline sausage

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Is this honey diseased?
« on: January 07, 2022, 09:17:06 pm »
I have four jars of honey extracted from honey comb. These are probably two or three years old stored in the back of the pantry.

Two of them have (what looks like) tomato seeds floating in them.

I always cut and crush honeycomb, and the left overhoney comb goes into a pot to be slowly heated until melted. Once cooled, the wax plug is lifted out and the remaining dark honey is poured into the muslin wrap, and then bottled as spare honey. I don't know what this technique is called.

So two of these jars has these floating particles in it.

I have included some photos of the jars and with a strong backlight to help see better.

Then I took a sample and put it into a dish.

The last photo is the honey diluted down in the dish and the best zoom shot I could get. It definitely looks like some kind of creature.

This is incredibly fascinating, but also a little concerning.

No other jars we have (fresh crushed or melt treated) have ever shown something like this. Does anyone know what I have here?

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(I've tried to give a large image but keep the file size down due to beemaster's restrictions)

Offline Acebird

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Re: Is this honey diseased?
« Reply #1 on: January 08, 2022, 08:29:30 am »
Without the back light the particles look clear.  Will they dissolve in water?  Might just be crystallization forming on particles in the honey.
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Offline sausage

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Re: Is this honey diseased?
« Reply #2 on: January 08, 2022, 10:01:54 am »
Hi Brian. Interesting you say that as the three samples did seem to eventually disappear in the dish. I will watch another sample tomorrow and get a microscopic photo too.

I have not heard of crystallisation stopping like this. Usually it would continue until the whole lot crystallises?

Offline The15thMember

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Re: Is this honey diseased?
« Reply #3 on: January 08, 2022, 11:54:54 am »
I was thinking along the same lines as Ace.  Is this a bottle of that spare honey that was heated?  I'm wondering if either that heating process, the fact that this honey is darker and has more particulates, or both caused the honey to form crystals around some particles suspended in the honey.  For example, if you make rock candy by putting a string in a jar of sugar solution, the crystals will form around the string.  I wonder if that same process is happening around some particles in the honey that are too small to easily see. 
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Offline jimineycricket

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Re: Is this honey diseased?
« Reply #4 on: January 08, 2022, 08:26:27 pm »
The number of crystals and, therefore, their size is determined by the density of "seeds" (any foreign particles) that might be in the mother liquor.

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Offline Acebird

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Re: Is this honey diseased?
« Reply #5 on: January 09, 2022, 09:32:13 am »
I have not heard of crystallisation stopping like this. Usually it would continue until the whole lot crystallises?
Are you sure it has stopped?
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Offline sausage

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Re: Is this honey diseased?
« Reply #6 on: January 12, 2022, 01:59:40 am »
I did another sample. Adding water indeed dissolved the particles. And to touch them, they're hard and sugary, not rubbery or fleshy.

So it's just crystals.

@acebird, yep pretty sure. These jars have been stocked in a pantry for two years, I would have expected more action by now. Other candying effects in other jars (with impurities) have been much quicker in the past.

Thanks everyone for chipping in and helping me here. It was a fasinating thing to witness and I usually expect the process to look cloudy rather than little star "seeds".

Learnt something new.