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Are these contaminants?

Hi everyone,
Just harvested our first batch of honey and have found quite a lot of particles/contaminants in it. I was wondering if anyone could identify them and let me know if I need to do anything.

Anything that is in your honey is a ‘contaminant’.
I filter with the common stainless steel double filter that you can buy from any bee keeping supplier or on Ebay and then re-filter thru the finer nylon filter that you can buy from the same sources. The finer filter is shaped like an ice cream cone with a wire hoop to sit over the rim of a honey pail and will trap anything you can see so that use finish with pure honey.
Welcome to the forum Alistair, lots of great folks here only to happy to pass on their experiences, Some will apply to you while others won’t because of your climate.
Cheers, Peter

Thanks Peter - I will look into getting one of these filters.

Is that necessary when you have a flow hive?
With regards Lars Kjærsgaard

Hi and welcome to the Flow forum! :blush:

I think most of what you are seeing is wax. Harmless, tasteless and edible, but not pretty. My Flow honey is usually very clean, with very few particles. However, I have noticed that if I harvest a frame at the end of the season which is only partially capped, it is much more likely to have particles in it.

If you want to improve the appearance, you can strain it, as @Peter48 says. You can even use a kitchen strainer if you have one with a fine enough mesh. You don’t need to strain it for health or hygiene though - only for appearance. :wink:

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Hey Lars, if you want truly pure honey then there is no alternative than filtering it. When filtering Flow Hive honey you will see bits of pollen and other crud flushed out of the comb into the catching pail, even bee legs is not uncommon when I filter, so anything in honey that can be removed in my opinion detracts from the honey.
On another thread that is active today there is a lot of talk about ants being a problem in hives which is another contaminant that can be found in any a type of honey, actually ants seem to be a bigger issue with Flow Hives, especially in the Supers. When I refer to a contaminant in honey I mean anything in the honey, ok. I filter for a better appearance and a more saleable product, so I agree with @Dawn_SD
Cheers Peter

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All good to know - cheers everyone. I am not really concerned about appearance. I was more worried that there was something in the honey that I shouldn’t be eating.

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If the honey is for your own use then go for it Alistair, the pollen is good for its health benefits but keep an eye out for wings growing from your shoulders or bee legs growing from your chest:grinning:
Cheers Peter:thinking: That was the best I could come up with on short notice:grinning:

Two or three bee parts and the rest is wax bits: All edible.

It’s probably best to physically check each frame before harvest, just to make sure there is no brood in the cells. You wouldn’t want squished bee larvae/pupae in your honey, like what happened recently to a client of mine. That was a few days before the beetles took over. This bloke sells his honey.

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short answer: no- it is not really neccesary if the particles don’t bother you. Long answer: sometimes you get more bits and pieces than others.- and it is nice to have crystal clear honey- especially if you plan to sell it. Soemtime there may be an ant- or a wax moth larvae caught up somehow- and customers likely won’t enjoy finding these ‘suprises’.

Best solution is to get the stainless steel double strainera nd have it on the bucket when you harvest the honey. It will onyl catch a tiny amout of stuff- but the honey in the bucket is rpetty uch ready to be jarred straight away.

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