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Thread: Grading Honey?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2010
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    Stevenson, Washington, USA
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    Default Grading Honey?

    Hi all,

    This is the first year I have enough honey surplus to even consider selling any. We are adopting a young man from Ethiopia and are going to sell 8oz muth jars as a fundraiser.

    The thing I keep banging my head into is the labelling requirement that the Honey Grade be on the label. Looking at honey grading standards, it seems you would need a phd to get it right!

    Any real world advice on how to go about getting a grade that complies with state standards and doesnt require a laboratory?

    Thanks,
    Andrew

  2. #2
    Join Date
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    Rader, Greene County, Tennessee, USA
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    Default Re: Grading Honey?

    Oops, changed my mind.
    Graham
    USDA Zone 7A Elevation 1400 ft

  3. #3
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    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
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    Default Re: Grading Honey?

    Andrew,
    I have the word "HONEY" on my label. I don't grade it. You don't need to grade it. As far as I know. But, maybe the rules are different where you live. I don't grade and have never had anyone ask me what Grade the Honey is. Were I asked, I reply "Excellent", of course.
    Mark Berninghausen "That which works, persists."

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
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    Herrick, SD USA
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    Default Re: Grading Honey?

    My understanding is that the term "Grade A" which is commonly seen on labels isnt required at all as it simply indicates that it is, in fact, honey and that it dosent exceed the 18.5% moisture maximum. As Mark said put the word "Honey" in large print and a net weight. You may also have to list a name and/or address. Thats it. Floral source is optional. UPC is a requirement to be sold in most stores but it dosent sound to me like it would be necessary in your case.
    "People will generally accept facts as truth only if the facts agree with what they already believe."- Andy Rooney

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Grading Honey?

    Since Nichols747 is in Washington, he is supposed to comply with State of Washington rules, here:
    http://agr.wa.gov/marketing/smallfar...llingHoney.pdf

    Labeling
    Honey Washington State law requires that honey be labeled with the following information:
    • Identification of the product (“honey”)
    • Name and address of the producer
    • The net weight and grade of the honey.

    Grading Honey
    For retail sale, honey must be graded. For the USDA standards for grading honey, see the United States Standard Grades of Extracted Honey at: www.ams.usda.gov/AMSv1.0/getfile?dDocName=STELDEV3011895

    Note the requirement about putting the grade on the label. If you follow the USDA link you will see the problem. That document offers no reasonable answer for a small producer.
    Graham
    USDA Zone 7A Elevation 1400 ft

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Grading Honey?

    Yeah, it's a real pickle. Don't want to violate the law, but it's pretty tough not to...

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Grading Honey?

    Quote Originally Posted by Nichols747 View Post
    Yeah, it's a real pickle. Don't want to violate the law, but it's pretty tough not to...
    Methinks you worry too much. Pack a nice product with an honest weight, your name and address and call it Grade A (it undoubtably is). No one will hassle you because your doing nothing wrong. To top it all off it's a fund raiser. Can I buy a jar?
    "People will generally accept facts as truth only if the facts agree with what they already believe."- Andy Rooney

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
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    Camas, WA
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    Default Re: Grading Honey?

    The way I read it your honey needs to be less than 18.6% water content and pretty clear to be Grade A. This year my honey is 17% and light yellow. I would guess yours will be close to the same since you aren't far from me. If you strain it through typical double strainer I think that it would easily meet the Grade A requirement.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Grading Honey?

    It is double sieved, and creepy light-yellow! How was your year, BeeDeeTee?

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Grading Honey?

    Jim, message me your address and I'll send you some, gratis!

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Grading Honey?

    Quote Originally Posted by jim lyon View Post
    Methinks you worry too much. Pack a nice product with an honest weight, your name and address and call it Grade A (it undoubtably is). No one will hassle you because your doing nothing wrong. To top it all off it's a fund raiser. Can I buy a jar?
    What Jim said. Except I have enuf of my own honey, thank you.
    Mark Berninghausen "That which works, persists."

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Grading Honey?

    Quote Originally Posted by jim lyon View Post
    Methinks you worry too much.
    Ditto. Based on Table V in the document you linked, your honey will likely be "Grade A" (a dubious government distinction that means nothing).

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Grading Honey?

    Quote Originally Posted by Nichols747 View Post
    It is double sieved, and creepy light-yellow! How was your year, BeeDeeTee?
    It was average, just late. We had hives that varied from 60-90lb. The hives are quite heavy themselves now that the honey has been pulled, so I won't need to feed much, if at all. Every 3-4 years we get the bright yellow honey. Other years it is still light but a shade darker. I personally like the yellow so we keep extra for ourselves on these years.

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Grading Honey?

    Invest in a Jake's or is it Jack's color scale. It is reasonalby priced and helps to grade the color of your honey. It takes the gues work out of grading the color by eye
    For is in Canada, our honey to be Canada #1 must be clear of forgein particles, strained through atleast 100 mesh, clear, no more than light amber and under 18%.

    http://www.beemaidbeestore.com/produ...&txtProdID=417

  15. #15
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