Unfortunately there is no honey this year. So to those who managed to buy a tub or have some jars in your garage for long term keeping - you'll be fine, to everyone else.. keep your eyes peeled and don't be fooled by poor quality honey sold at a premium.
Here's some info:
The honey we purchase in bulk for the Co-op is cold extracted, raw and organic. Meaning; the honey is not heated up to make it super runny for fast production (where important friendly bacteria, nutrients and trace minerals will be lost), it is not heated at any stage of the extraction process. You know it's raw when it candies quickly. The hives are placed in the bush well away from any sniff of civilization, farms (that spray pesti/herbi/fungicide) or roads. No pesticide strips are used inside the hive and only natural (non chemical) fuels are used (wood/bark etc) for the smoking cans to calm the bees while the combs are removed, thus keeping organic standards.
The processing of Capilano honey is a real eye opener. Our suppliers also provide honey to Capilano. They heat it first of all and keep it at a constant temperature for sometime to ensure the honey won't candy. This removes all the beneficial nutrients, antibacterial qualities and trace elements (everything!) from the honey. Then they mix it with a glucose syrup and colouring - so they can stretch it further, sell it as "blended" honey and get a premium for it.
I had a 5kilo tub of the stuff from years and years ago. It had finally candied and what I saw was the original honey had tried to candy and sat down at the bottom. The glucose syrup and colouring had risen to the top (split like a curdled cake batter).
Raw honey is so beneficial. Minor burns, soar throats, bee stings, the list goes on (ofcourse consult your Dr not me!).
Candied honey is easy to make runny without killing the good stuff in it when you zap it in the microwave or boil it up (argh!! perish the thought). Just put the jar in the sun and turn every hour (or whenever you see it and think of it). It's a gentle warm up and you will still have all that goodness.
So hopefully we'll have better luck next year.
Dedicated to Erin x