Does anyone have any recommendations for pollen drying? I have read several methods from freeze-drying, placing in a container with a desiccant, placing in the refrigerator uncovered and using a food dehydrator or pollen dryer. The last two using air circulation and low heat to dry pollen. I’m curious if anyone has used these methods. I’ve seen claims that freezing can burst pollen cells due to expansion of water within the pollen and that heat can destroy the nutritional value of the pollen. Any tips from those with experience?
At one time when I was making a living by beekeeping, I used to trap a lot of pollen.
To keep the pollen pellets intact and insect infestations occurring in the stored product to a minimum, we air dried (with supplemental heat) the fresh collected pollen…then it was frozen for longer term storage. Some customers wanted it fresh from the hive and we recommended that they kept it frozen…but when you go through the freeze-thaw cycle, the pellet structure weakens…turning to powder.
With the regards to:
I’ve always thought that pollen that has gone through the fermentation stage… as is the case with beebread…is the premium nutritional form of bee pollen.
Dandelion/willow spring pollen:
Thanks for the info and the awesome photos Doug! I’ve since been able to locate several published articles on the topic which explore the effect of drying temperature on nutritional value (in general higher temperatures lead to lower levels across the board). Most articles recommend around 40 C to maintain the highest nutritional value and closest textural similarity to that of fresh polen.
Thank you Brian…40C sounds about right…good luck…there’s a great demand for bee pollen!