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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
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    gloucester, va
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    28

    Default Royal Jelly question

    I have seen people selling "royal Jelly" for many health benefits. I havent asked the question until now mainly because my brother just called and asked about it. I know that it is used for queen rearing and is produced by the workers. I dont believe it's stored like honey so how can it harvested? My initial take is that its a gimic, and cannot be harvested in enough quanitity to be sold. I can just imagine thousands of sad little bees strapped to a bench and forced to produce royal jelly for the masses.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Jackson, MO
    Posts
    1,883

    Default Re: Royal Jelly question

    Well, I have wondered the same thing. People approach me at the farmer's market seeking royal jelly and I tell them the only way I know to harvest royal jelly is from aborted queen cells. Each one only yielding a quantity about the size of a pencil eraser.

    They look at me like I'm pulling their leg and I suggest they continue to patronize the local health food store where the cost is so much more reasonable than if I produced it.

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

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Calhoun Co, Texas, USA
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    1,311

    Default Re: Royal Jelly question

    Quote Originally Posted by Grant View Post
    <snip> the only way I know to harvest royal jelly is from aborted queen cells. Each one only yielding a quantity about the size of a pencil eraser.
    Yep, if there's another way, I sure as anything haven't heard of it yet...and it's not reputed to store well at all, either!

    Checking my wife's stash of "Royal Jelly" pills, they say they contain "500mg" that is "from 152mg of Royal Jelly concentrate, equivalent to 500mg of fresh Royal Jelly." The "other ingredients" list consists of: Soybean Oil, Gelatin (I'm guessing that's for the capsule), Glycerin, Yellow Beeswax, Soy Lecithin. End result, I think there's as much, if not more, NON-RJ ingredient in those pills as there is RJ ingredient. My wife says they energize her, so I don't argue...but I don't think the pills can even begin to compare to real (especially real FRESH) RJ.

    Here's an interesting web page I just found about Royal Jelly production, if anyone else is interested in reading it: Value-added products from beekeeping. Chapter 6.(Royal Jelly)

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Calhoun Co, Texas, USA
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    1,311

    Default Re: Royal Jelly question

    Quote Originally Posted by rjg View Post
    I can just imagine thousands of sad little bees strapped to a bench and forced to produce royal jelly for the masses.
    now THAT, I would have to see...lol
    Unfortunately, though, I think the nurse bees control their secretion of RJ based on cues we don't even begin to understand, so I don't think it's presently even possible to harvest it directly from the nurse bees...have to kill queen cells to get the RJ.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    gloucester, va
    Posts
    28

    Default Re: Royal Jelly question

    Quote Originally Posted by robherc View Post
    My wife says they energize her, so I don't argue...
    Good call!

    So the stuff you would get at the health food store works if you need/want it to. And to harvest it, queens need to die. The article you sent was very informative. I think these replies answer my question, thank you.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Rader, Greene County, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    4,957

    Default Re: Royal Jelly question

    Grant - There might be an opportunity for the small producer to market royal jelly here. From the link RobHerc provided:

    Producers also sell pure royal jelly in its original queen cells after having removed the larvae and sealed the cells. The cells may be sealed with another wax queen cell cup, with liquid wax or by squeezing the ends of the cell together. The queen cells thus prepared can be packaged in small plastic boxes or glass jars together with a small spatula. The main disadvantage of this type of packaging is that the royal jelly does not keep well (two weeks in a refrigerator or a few months when frozen immediately) and only sells well directly from the producer to the consumer. On the other hand such sales can be extremely profitable and are also attractive to consumers who can be sure that the product is untreated and fresh. Given the normal variation in content of queen cells the net weight must be given for the smallest possible quantity (e.g. minimum content 250 mg/cell).
    Royal jelly sold in any of the above forms must always be kept at or below 5~ C during storage, during transportation and in the retail store. Empty packages can be displayed while full containers are stored in a refrigerator.
    Queen cells with fresh royal jelly could be marketed much like specialty honey - at a premium! Of course, that depends on your local market.
    Graham
    USDA Zone 7A Elevation 1400 ft

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    San Jose, Ca
    Posts
    372

    Default Re: Royal Jelly question

    Just a guess, but if there were queen cups, with tiny tubes out the bottom that sucked out the jelly every hour lets say, then the nurse bees might fill it back up. If you had 1000 hive all setup like this, you might be able to get some jelly.
    Disclaimer: I know enough to know I don't know anything yet.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Brandon, Florida
    Posts
    80

    Default Re: Royal Jelly question

    HUMM If you had 1000 hives making queen cells say 60 per hive at 4 bucks a cell that would be $240000 for the cells. And the royal jelly is sold for what price?

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Landing, NJ, USA
    Posts
    197

    Default Re: Royal Jelly question

    Is there a market for 60000 cells?
    Bill

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    gloucester, va
    Posts
    28

    Default Re: Royal Jelly question

    $240000 for cells? That does sound nice. But what if we do the small tube thing that Mr. Happy suggested, then we could charge $8 for 250mg of royal jelly? Almost $500,000. WOW! Be right back, I'm gonna go retire and get started!

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Pinellass County, Florida
    Posts
    1,069

    Default Re: Royal Jelly question

    And Just think with all those cells you just promted your bees to make
    More than likely your Hive will swarm in a short time
    Breaking news now reporting that (1000hives X 30,000+ bees with approx 2/3 leaving = 2/3 of 30,000,000)
    I think that comes to 20,000,000 bees on the fly
    The TV viewers would be fainting in their seats LOL
    If your the owner you would be dieing in your seat

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Palm Bay, FL, USA
    Posts
    2,312

    Default Re: Royal Jelly question

    Royal Jelly production is simple! When I started working in the business in the 50's my boss produced RJ as a side business to his commercial operation and had numerous customers; we didn't have to store it long! It's how I learned to graft, didn't have a choice! The boss showed me how to do it, handed me the grafting needle and said "get to it." We had about 50 five frame nucs set up as cell builders, just like raising queens. Kept them built up by transferring capped brood and bees into them. Grafted several nucs every day, usually 3 cell bars/45 cells per nuc, and pulled out cells 4-4 1/2 days later just prior to them being capped when they have max RJ. Removed the larva with a modified crocheting needle, folded the end of the cell over and placed them in a small jar then filled it with honey. You just chew up the cells, one per day. Another beekeeper up the road from us a couple miles, in Ft. Pierce, FL, ran around 500 cell builder nucs for RJ. Used to be a big business and still is in other places. In Taiwan all their bees are used for RJ production.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Calhoun Co, Texas, USA
    Posts
    1,311

    Default Re: Royal Jelly question

    Thanks for the experience-based insight fish stix! It's good to hear someone experienced tell you your "new idea" is something that's been done for years, and actually works...BEFORE you waste your time trying a method that doesn't

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Weeki Wachee, Florida,USA
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    1,822

    Default Re: Royal Jelly question

    I didn't know much about commercial production so I looked up this video.

    http://m.youtube.com/?reload=7&rdm=m...QgMYBjWw&gl=US

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Iran_kermansh_kangavar
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    2

    Default Re: Royal Jelly question

    in Commercial production of royal jelly how they store and Packing?

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