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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Bartow, GA, USA
    Posts
    1

    Default Strange taste of honey bought

    Hello--Am a total "newbie" on this website, and, what's more, NOT a beekeeper ( -- just a life-time avid consumer and user of raw honey (mostly in tea, but also in cooking and baking)... Therefore, please forgive my great lack of knowledge on anything having to do with beekeeping .

    I came upon this website upon my attempt, yesterday, to find an online reference that would tell me the source of the following problem--and am hoping someone here can clarify the problem .

    Trying to support our local economy/farmers/beekeepers/etc., I bought a large jar of raw honey from a local beekeeper yesterday. (He evidently has been doing this for a few years and had all his certificates or licenses displayed.) When I got home and tasted the honey, it shocked me, because the honey had a "bite" to it. The only thing I could associate the background taste with was---lighter fluid! I researched a bit online, and found a reference saying that when one is smoking out a hive (hope that is the correct way of phrasing it), one should never use lighter fluid or butane.

    Can that be the reason why the honey has that odd, very unpleasant taste? I would feel awkward going back to the gentleman and claiming this, if I can't be sure--(and even then, I still will feel awkward...)

    Also, the honey is opaque (not creamy), although it isn't cold and doesn't have any cappings, etc. in it. The raw honey I typically buy in stores (organic, mostly) is usually pretty "clear." Is the opaqueness normal (no filtering), or is that also something to be concerned about?

    Sorry for sounding like such a novice and so uninformed, even though I've been having honey for years! Thank you very much in advance for anyone's expert opinion, here ! I hope to be back and learn some more! This is a neat site!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Tulsa OK. USA
    Posts
    846

    Default Re: Strange taste of honey bought

    Hello, Raw local honey varies in flavor depending on the sourse the bees got the nectur from, sometimes it can have quite a zing to it. Second almost ALL store shelf honey is filtered and pasturized to enhance appearance and shelf life. Organic is in the eye of the seller,there is no U.S. standard for organic honey, some belive that if they don't use chemicals in their bee hive then they have organic honey, others such a I belive that bees forage several miles from home to collect nectur and MAY come in contact with chemicals/pesticides then how can we call it organic?If you buy store shelf honey read the lable to see where it comes from( my local WalMart has honey from three sourses one says it is a product of us/canada/India,(it is clear and pretty)but the seller has no idea where the honey in that bottle came from.The second is from Texas(it is cloudy)The third is from right here in Tulsa(it is cloudy ) Most of your local raw honey will be cloudy unless it is filtered and may even taste different from one batch to the next as the beekeeper may harvest more than once a summer each time from a different bloom amd each having a differnt taste. I would talk to the seller and explain your concerns,he will most likely want to make you happy and perhaps explain himself and honey.Jim

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Dexter, Maine
    Posts
    1,037

    Default Re: Strange taste of honey bought

    Have you asked anyone else to taste it? (without you saying what you taste)?
    I agree take it with you and go talk to the beekeeper. I am learning that people that buy a large quanity of honey should open and taste it before paying and leaving.....

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Loganville, GA
    Posts
    2,172

    Default Re: Strange taste of honey bought

    The opaque color may be from the honey crystallizing? The flavor may be your own taste buds wacky interpretation? Get a second or third opinion and see if others agree?

    Just because someone has certificates or license doesn't mean that they follow practices they know are acceptable. Beeks are people just like everyone else. There's both good and bad. It's entirely possible that they are using petroleum lubricates in the extractor to save a buck or two? Maybe cleaned with something they shouldn't have? Who knows?

    If you and a friend or two agree that it may be tainted with petroleum products, it's entirely up to you where to go next. That would be a bad thing if it is and could cause others problems? If you were to pursue it further, you should take the initiative and have it tested before making accusations that can cost someone their possible livelihood.

    Good luck!
    "Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts." Winston Churchill

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,212

    Default Re: Strange taste of honey bought

    A lot of honey's have a bite to them. Usually it's the variety. Once in a while I've had some that was slightly fermented. I actually liked the taste, but it was a bite for sure and you might mistake it for something else.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Ballina, NSW - Australia
    Posts
    227

    Default Re: Strange taste of honey bought

    If the guy used butane to light a smoker, that butaney flavour wouldnt be transferred into the honey taste to that strength your talking about.

    Might be a floral taste, or the honey is fermented or something.

    Take it back if possible - taste some others of the same sellers - he would probably like the feedback

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