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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Lenoir City, TN
    Posts
    13

    Default What to do with 30 year old honey

    I was finishing up extracting my fall honey and I found about 50 gallons of honey that is about 30 years old. (in the basement not my hive). Is there anything that can be done with it and how can I tell if it is safe? Most of it is very dark. and still smells like honey maybe a little like hoarhound or maybe goldenrod. I just hate to see that much honey and have nothing to do with it. It was extracted by my grandfather in his early days of bee keeping, I'm not sure why he is keeping it.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Alexandria, VA
    Posts
    370

    Default Re: What to do with 30 year old honey

    Do you have a refractor to test the moisture content to see if it might have fermented? Is it bubbly?

    If not, how'd he seal it and keep it from crystallizing?? Sounds like your grandfather knew a trick or two if he packaged honey 30 years ago that's still good!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    YANCEY CO., NC
    Posts
    639

    Default Re: What to do with 30 year old honey

    just fed my bees some honey my father-in-law made in the early 70s had to heat it up some and it too was real dark and had a off taste.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Lenoir City, TN
    Posts
    13

    Default Re: What to do with 30 year old honey

    I don't have a honey refractor but it isn't bubbly. it is very thick and doesn't look like it is crystallized. I had some honey do that last year and this looks nothing like it. He has talked about times that he has gotten very dark honey out of his hives but this looks like molasses.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    piedmont s.c.
    Posts
    244

    Smile Re: What to do with 30 year old honey

    honey does get darker with age but if moisture dont get to it , it will last for ever if it turns to sugar just heat slowly , feed it to the bees if you dont think it is safe, the only thing I can think of is rust from the barrel.I turun over a barrel one time in my bee house used a dust pan and retrievedmost of it ,feed that to my bees , used a paint brush toput it in drawn cone. good luck rock.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Greensburg, Ky.
    Posts
    1,148

    Default Re: What to do with 30 year old honey

    Maybe your grandfather could of heated up the honey sometime during the 50yrs because the honey crystallized. They say honey will last a long time. Just imagine if that honey could talk, i bet it would have alot of interesting stories....

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Grand Rapids, Ohio
    Posts
    863

    Default Re: What to do with 30 year old honey

    The price for that honey 30 years ago would have been right around $.32-.34 a lb. Even dark honey is selling for $1.30 a lb today. These are bulk prices in the barrel. I only wish I had my honey from even five years ago. Honey price five years ago was at $.89, and now $1.85.

    The Retierment honey!!!!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Belews Creek NC
    Posts
    252

    Default Re: What to do with 30 year old honey

    I shouldnt even be posting cause Im not sure but I think the reason it is dark has something to do with the enzymes in the honey. Something like they keep doing whatever enzymes do and it turns the honey dark and it taste awful. Now if the honey had been heated to the 150 f range and kept awhile there,it would have killed alot of the enzymes. Thats why honey you get for the grocery store has a real long shelf life. My wifes grandfather use to get sourwood every year from the hills and after he passed away his daughter tried it and it was about the worst tasting stuff I have ever put in my mouth. I did a little searching on the internet and found out about the enzymes. It did have a real strong horehound smell. Sorry I cant remember any more details.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Farmington, NM
    Posts
    736

    Default Re: What to do with 30 year old honey

    That is awesome...

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Athens, Tennessee,USA
    Posts
    15

    Default Re: What to do with 30 year old honey

    Make mead.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
    Posts
    5,991

    Default Re: What to do with 30 year old honey

    Just as an aside, the oldest human made food ever found, that was judged still edible, was in a 4,000 year old tomb in Egypt, it was honeycakes.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    Clarksville, Michigan, USA
    Posts
    216

    Default Re: What to do with 30 year old honey

    Bear Bait

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Pigeon Falls, WI
    Posts
    2,527

    Default Re: What to do with 30 year old honey

    Bottle it and sell it as vintage honey.
    Leer Family Honey Farm-Shannon Leer

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Central San Joaquin Valley, California
    Posts
    490

    Smile Re: What to do with 30 year old honey

    Liquefy it and bottle it in 1 lb bottles. Offer it for sale to the beesource members. That way, we can show our customers that honey is good forever with a taste.
    I'll sign up for the first bottle.
    Laurence
    His Hive Honey Farm - Do all for His glory!

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Murfreesboro, TN, USA
    Posts
    1,398

    Default Re: What to do with 30 year old honey

    Quote Originally Posted by Beeslave View Post
    Bottle it and sell it as vintage honey.
    That's really not a bad idea. People would purchase it just out of curiousity and would pay a premium to try it.

    I got some dark honey this year from a cutout. It too tasted somewhat like molasses. It's not the first time I have eaten dark honey that had that taste. It's possible the darkness and taste have more to do with the minerals in the ground that are picked up in the nectar.
    De Colores,
    Ken

  16. #16
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Azle Texas USA
    Posts
    369

    Default Re: What to do with 30 year old honey

    I'll put it up against some I cut out last Sat. A dark honey,a first taste "a bite" and then a great btast I havent had in years.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Port Hope, Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    66

    Default Re: What to do with 30 year old honey

    We have honey that has been in the family about 40 years. There is about 5 gallons left. It was forgot for 30 years and then about ten years ago my brother found it in the basement and bottled a jar as a gift for my wife. It is crystallized hard as a rock, lightish colored, and delicious. Now it comes out every once in awhile and we sample some vintage honey.
    So we just keep it and try it out every once in a while. Hope its around long enough; maybe I'll get the chance to try some 100 year old honey.

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Santa Clara, CA USA
    Posts
    66

    Default Re: What to do with 30 year old honey

    I too would love to have some of that 30 year old honey. If you do decide that it is edible, please consider selling some to me. Just one pound. I know it's probably not worth the hassle but it sure would be a pleasure to try some. In return I'll send you a pound of mine to try. Mine is not "Vintage" but it is very tasty.

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Findlay, Ohio
    Posts
    323

    Default Re: What to do with 30 year old honey

    I have a few quarts of Buckwheat honey that is well over 10 years old, still liquid, very dark, and for me I do not like the tast or smell. Also; have a few quarts that came from a tree some friends had cut for fire wood a couple of years ago, it is dark, still liquid, looks, smells and tasts very good. Have NO idea what the gals were colledting.

    I can understand different colors and smells of honey, what I do not understand is why some honey crystalizes and other honey does not

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Murfreesboro, TN, USA
    Posts
    1,398

    Default Re: What to do with 30 year old honey

    Quote Originally Posted by raosmun View Post

    I can understand different colors and smells of honey, what I do not understand is why some honey crystalizes and other honey does not
    Honey crystalizes based on the type of nectar brought back from the flowers. Some nectar crystalizes very quickly others almost never crystalize. I think it has something to do with the type of sugar that is in the nectar and possibly the minerals that are in the nectar.

    I have read about it in some detail but I can't remember where or when.
    De Colores,
    Ken

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