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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Willington, CT USA
    Posts
    414

    Default Crystalized Honey

    I just noticed that my honey is starting to look cloudy. What do you do once you have bottled the honey for sale (1lb glass jars), have the labels on etc and it begins to crystalize?

    I know that you can put crystalized honey in very warm water and it will return to it's normal state. Don't you have to open the jar and stir the honey and wouldn't this let in bacteria?

    Some folks just ordered honey so I want to make sure I give them the best stuff that i can.

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Southern Oregon
    Posts
    1,144

    Default

    A warming cabinet also works great. You do not have to open the jar to melt the crystals. The most preferred solution would be to have educated customers who realize that candied honey is perfectly good and preferred by many. It is kind of a "no mess formula". If it crystallizes nicely it could be "almost like" creamed honey.
    John B Jacob www.oldsolbees.com

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Sparta, Tennessee
    Posts
    2,122

    Default

    I've had to re-label some in the past after putting the bottles in hot water on the stove I've never stirred the honey in the bottles and the honey has just thinned out by itself.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Willington, CT USA
    Posts
    414

    Default

    I have one person that specifically asked if I had any that was crystalized (better give him a call).

    I have a jar from 2005 that crystalized and was put in warm water and today it looks perfect. I uncrystalized it before it was transferred to smaller quantities for resale.

    My only concern is that people bought my honey and think there is something wrong with it because the consistency is changing.

    Thanks

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Willington, CT USA
    Posts
    414

    Default

    Thanks Jeff,

    I have some bottles soaking now and the labels are all a float. This stuff had just started to crystalize. Good to know that a soaking is all they need.

    Does anyone warm the honey before/after they bottle to prevent crystalizing? I bottled this stuff right after extracting and did not do anything to it.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Oxford, Kansas
    Posts
    1,988

    Default honey does not contain bacteria

    Quote Originally Posted by Benton2569 View Post
    I just noticed that my honey is starting to look cloudy. What do you do once you have bottled the honey for sale (1lb glass jars), have the labels on etc and it begins to crystalize?

    Don't you have to open the jar and stir the honey and wouldn't this let in bacteria?

    Thanks
    Honey is an antibacterial it was used has a wound dressing before penicillan think about it did you sterilize the extractor and all item used to process the honey before it was bottled. put it in a hot box at 100 deg. it wil return to liquid within 24 hours no stiring necesary

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Southern Oregon
    Posts
    1,144

    Default

    Honey can actually contain bacteria, however they can not grow until it is diluted. Once diluted it can easily grow yeast and bacteria, that is why proper moisture content is so important. Some commercial packers will dilute and culture just to see how "clean" the honey they are being supplied is.
    John B Jacob www.oldsolbees.com

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    College Station, Texas
    Posts
    6,985

    Default

    you could microwave the honey. a one pound bottle I would microwave for about 45 seconds at a time. repeat until clear.

    it is regards to the issue of untimely crystalization that I place my labels on the caps since I prefer a water bath to the microwave.

    fully crystalized honey is preferred by some customers. it is defitely less messy and in the solid form works quite nicely in tea and coffee.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Oxford, Kansas
    Posts
    1,988

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by JBJ View Post
    Honey can actually contain bacteria, however they can not grow until it is diluted. Once diluted it can easily grow yeast and bacteria, that is why proper moisture content is so important. Some commercial packers will dilute and culture just to see how "clean" the honey they are being supplied is.

    This is true statement I couldnt agree with more this is why honey is not to be fed to children under 1 year of age. The reference I made on honey being an antibacterial for wound dressing needs more clarification and may have been confussing since I didnt state that it did indeed contain bacteria Now correct me if I am wrong here I am going out on a limb. The bacteria is kept in check by the natural accuring peroxides in the honey it is these properties that makes it an antibacterial thanks for clarifying the point on it actually containing bacteria

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Round Top, New York - Northern Catskill Mtns.
    Posts
    1,895

    Default

    I have many customers who look for crystallized honey. They want Raw Honey and nothing says Raw Honey like a crystallized jar.
    There are labels that can be purchased about crystallized honey and how to re-liquefy.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    S. W. \'Washington State, Columbia River Gorge
    Posts
    71

    Default

    I use my oven at a low temperature for 24 hours. Around 120 degrees. Leaving jars out in the full sunlight during the summer for a couple of days will also do it.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    West Newton, Pa.
    Posts
    916

    Default

    In the summer I place any crystallized bottles in the cab of my closed up truck. Normally it will be liquified within 24 hours. In the winter I place them in an old refrigerator that is equipped with two 100 watt lightbulbs controlled by a thermostat set at 90 degrees.
    Be Yourself, Everyone Else Is Taken!

  13. #13

    Default Heat cabinet is great

    I use a heat cabinet, actually a wax melter turned down with a top added. When it reaches 100 degrees I turn it off and leave it closed. I do loosen the caps first so the plastic bottles will not puff out like a balloon.
    Married 23 years and still makin honey. www.Johnshoney.com
    John, WA9WJG

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Jackson, MO
    Posts
    1,884

    Default

    The fridge with two 100-watt light bulbs is what I would call a "warming box."

    I built a wood box with an elevated floor of two 2x4's. Under these 2x4's, I wired three, regular old light bulbs into the floor. The box is tall enough to handle two five-gallon buckets which rest on these 2x4's. I use a thermostat from a water heater at it's lowest setting. Buckets, jars, squeeze bears, even comb honey granulated in the jar (if you're careful) can be warmed up overnight. No soaking. No labels falling off. No need to remove the lids. Works great.

    Before, I had two cases of pint jars granulate. I didn't have the warming box built so I created a new label and called it "Spoon Honey." I make all my labels on the computer so I used an old-fashioned type style. Under the title of "Spoon Honey," I added, "Honey you eat with a spoon."

    Many of my customers went, "Huh!" and since many of them put it in their tea, granulation was no big deal.

    Grant
    Jackson, MO http://www.MakingPlasticFramesWork.homestead.com
    Beekeeping With Twenty-five Hives: https://www.createspace.com/4152725

  15. #15
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Kennesaw, GA.
    Posts
    21

    Default

    Put your 1 pound jars into a "Ziplock" bag. Squeeze out the excess air (so it won"t float), seal and put it in your pot of hot water.

    Doug

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Princeton, West Virginia
    Posts
    478

    Default

    Its that time of the year. Some good ideas here. Since I have customers that want honey that hasn't been heated or pasturized I keep my temperatures down to what I could expect to find in a hive. 100 or less is what I shoot for. I also don't bottle my honey all up at once. That makes it easier to re liquidfy
    What I Smoke has a Sting to it

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Feb 2001
    Location
    Enfield,Ct.
    Posts
    470

    Default

    Every beek who bottles a substantial amount of honey should have a hot box.the optimum temp for crystalizationis 57 degrees so store your honey a bit warmer or colder.Don't bottle any more than what you will move in a few weeks.Use a good thermostat in your hot box and don't heat to more than 105-110.(Kelly sells a good one)Warming a 5 gal pail speeds up bottling.I run a nylon straining bag inside my bottling bucket to catch any stray crystals from the warmed pail.Don't use a microwave!!! The heat is uneven and plastic heats up faster than honey.I speak from experience.What a mess.

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    North Hills, CA USA
    Posts
    454

    Default Cloudy Honey

    If bottled honey starts to cloud, the bottles may be placed in a Gas Pilot Light driven oven. Oven Not Turned On. For about a 24 hr. period. Loosen lid, clarifies nicely from heat of pilot.
    Walt

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Willington, CT USA
    Posts
    414

    Default

    Thanks for all the info. Jack I think you hit the nail on the head - I had recently moved my honey into the basement which averages about 60 degrees. Storage location may be my key issue.

    Happy Holidays to All!!

  20. #20
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Parkton, North Carolina
    Posts
    255

    Default crystalization labels

    Brushy Mountain and probably others sell a small sticky label that explains why natural honey crystalizes. They are inexpensive and serve to educate the public. Theresa.

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