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Bees and bits in the honey

I removed my full Flow frames to the garage as a first step toward packing down for winter. I was draining into my honey bucket for a couple hours. When I returned to check I found that my (obviously) lame attempt to keep bees out had failed and the bucket had a couple hundred drowned bees in it. I screened out the bees and other bits and got to wondering; is the honey still safe for consumption if it had a load of dead bees steeping in it? I wish I was asking for a friend🤪

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We are all friends here! Don’t worry, your honey is perfectly safe.

Some reckless commercial beekeepers sometimes kill thousands of bees whilst extracting honey. The only thing you may want to do is “strain” it (NOT filtering). That just means either get a honey strainer, or use a kitchen sieve with the kind of mesh size that you would use for sieving flour, sugar etc. I would strain it as soon as possible, because rotting bees don’t smell great (don’t ask me how I know), so I am sure they won’t impart a good flavor to the honey either.

Well done for asking bravely. I am sure that others will benefit from your question! :blush:

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Many thanks, Dawn_SD. Your reply is just what I hoped for!

“As they stare into the mirror and perceive only the myth of their exceptionalism, Americans remain almost bizarrely incapable of seeing what has actually become of their country.” Wade Davis

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How do you know @Dawn_SD :joy:

Were the majority of cells capped? If not your issue may not just be rotting bees but fermented honey…

Otherwise honey will be safe. Honey has antimicrobial properties.

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I lost about 40,000 bees over a week or two last year from pesticides. When they accumulate on the ground in front of the hive (and inside), they smell absolutely foul. OK, you asked. Now try to unremember that image… :face_vomiting:

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Yes, virtually all capped

“As they stare into the mirror and perceive only the myth of their exceptionalism, Americans remain almost bizarrely incapable of seeing what has actually become of their country.” Wade Davis