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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    St. Clements, Ontario, Canada
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    15

    Default Ontario grading regulation

    I want to expand from selling at the farm gate to selling at retail outlets. To do that I need to grade my honey. Grading for colour, and moisture are straight forward. I'm struggling with filtering. So far I've been letting the honey settle and bottle from the bottom of the tank. The clarity is good and my customers are happy. This won't fly for meeting grade No. 1. What are others doing to meet the regulation? What is involved in pushing the honey through a #80 mesh (.180mm)? Is gravity sufficient or does the honey need to be heated/pressurized? I'd like to do as little processing on the honey as possible.

    I suppose I could always mark it as "substandard" I'm sure the customers would read it and put it back on the shelf....



    Ontario No. 1

    The honey,
    (a) contains not more than 17.8 per cent moisture or, where its container is marked “pasteurized”, not more than 18.6 per cent moisture;
    (b) is free from any foreign material that would be retained on a screen having a sieve opening of 0.180 mm;
    (c) contains not more than 0.1 per cent water insoluble solids or, where its container is marked “pressed”, not more than 0.5 per cent water insoluble solids;
    (d) has a flavour characteristic of its colour classification and is free from any objectionable flavour, aroma or taint;
    (e) where its container is marked “liquid”, is clear, bright, uniform in colour and free from visible crystals; and
    (f) where its container is marked “creamed” or is otherwise marked to indicate that the contents are granulated, has a smooth fine texture and complete and uniform granulation.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Toronto, ON Canada
    Posts
    92

    Default Re: Ontario grading regulation

    I've been trying to wrap my head around the requirements for selling honey in Ontario too.

    But so far my straining attempts have been done more with just wanting to be able to offer people gifts that don't have much wax. So I went to a kitchen supply store and got the thing with the finest mesh I could find which turned out to be a splash screen. I'm not sure if it's 0.18 mm but it's probably close. It did take a bit of time for the honey to start dripping through, a bit more time for it to gain momentum and then it went reasonably quick.

    Not being designed for the job my splash guard isn't really useful for large amounts of honey. So now I'm wondering where does one even find 0.18mm food grade mesh?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Rader, Greene County, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    5,978

    Default Re: Ontario grading regulation

    Quote Originally Posted by Beekeeping.IsGood.ca View Post
    So now I'm wondering where does one even find 0.18mm food grade mesh?
    0.18mm is the same as 180 microns. So a 200 micron filter is too coarse, but 180 or less would do the job. I don't see why it needs to be a wire mesh. Some possibilities are a 150 micron water filter:
    http://www.filtersfast.com/P-OmniFil...een-filter.asp
    Its a $15 filter, but it is cleanable and clearly food grade.

    Here is a stainless steel cooking oil filter, 150 microns:
    http://www.ebay.com/itm/TOTE-FILTER-...r#ht_500wt_716
    Graham
    USDA Zone 7A Elevation 1400 ft

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Faulkner Manitoba, Canada
    Posts
    1,696

    Default Re: Ontario grading regulation

    Contact your bee supply store. Most, like Bee Maid winnipeg carry 100 mesh straining cloth. Easy to use, easy to clean and reuse. If you are straining into a 45gallon drum, you can use a ratchet strap to secure the cloth.
    Check out CFIA, they are the ones who inspect and regulate the honey industry, especially for farm gate and retail sales.
    Too sell to stores, you not only need to grade your honey but you have to follow labelling regulations and jar sizes AND...have a registration number from CFIA. To get the registration number, you need to upgrade you honey house to meet these regulations and be inspected (audited) anually. Some of the regulations require a lot number for your honey for trace back, water controls if your water source is well water, cleaning controls and logs, maintenance controls and logs, glass breakeage logs, pest controls and logs, guidelines for workers and guidelines for cleaning equipement and small tools. Add to that, you need to keep some kind of log somewhere for treatments of hives.
    Walls must be covered in some kind of acrylic or tin or food grade paint, lights must be either have cover protectors or shatter proof bulbs, and anything other than extracting must be covered and out of sight.
    For example, our honey house was also the candle shop at one time. Anything candle related had to be put away and covered to reduce the risk of any cross contamination.
    It is illegal to sell to stores for resale without the registration number.

    If your hives numbers are small, the Canadian Honey Council is coming out with C - Bisque. Which are honey house regualtions and codes. However it is more costly than CFIA .
    How do i know this? We sell retail and are CFIA inspected
    Honey falls under federal jurisdiction

    I should mention, honey labels. The weight, the grade and creamed or liquid must be a certain size, depending on your label. French and English must be on the labels, and contact information, as well as lot number, and registration number. They will inspect your label and keep a copy of it in your file.
    Canada no 1 must be on the label if graded to that. This means color, moisture, and clarity meet the standards of Canadian no1 honey. These standards apply not only to Canadian produced honey on store shelves, but also include that imported honey meet these stardards. It is the reason for these standards. So that an importing country can not come back and say...your own honey does not meet these standards so we do not have to and take it to the world trade federation or what ever that tribunal is called
    Last edited by honeyshack; 08-13-2012 at 11:07 PM.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Toronto, ON Canada
    Posts
    92

    Default Re: Ontario grading regulation

    Like I said I'm still trying to understand the regulations. But so far it sounds to me like honey testing in voluntary and premise inspections and CFIA registration isn't necessary in Ontario if you don't export out of province or country.

    One of my Mentors was formerly an inspector in manitoba. She sometimes brings equipment back when she visits. Manitoba seems to be a good spot for bee stuff. The bee supply shop closest to me is notoriously awful. They do have a double strainer listed in their catalogue but with no mention of the mesh size.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Faulkner Manitoba, Canada
    Posts
    1,696

    Default Re: Ontario grading regulation

    Beemaid honey ships and they are notoriously good!

    I would check out CFIA for resale or talk to OBA about the regs for resale. I checked out OBA and the regs and it does does talk of retail, but was very vague on resale honey.
    http://www.inspection.gc.ca/food/hon.../1303763748364

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    St. Clements, Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    15

    Default Re: Ontario grading regulation

    Ah, good point, I'll give the OBA a call tomorrow and see if they can set me straight. A course on this aspect of beekeeping really useful

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Toronto, ON Canada
    Posts
    92

    Default Re: Ontario grading regulation

    Would love to hear what they tell you.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    St. Clements, Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    15

    Default Re: Ontario grading regulation

    Just a quick update, I have a phone call scheduled for tomorrow with someone at the OBA who will be able answer my questions and/or point me in the right direction.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Faulkner Manitoba, Canada
    Posts
    1,696

    Default Re: Ontario grading regulation

    So today was inspection day from CFIA at our honey house. One of my questions was about this thread. I am told that because Ontairo does alot of value added products, that they have their own guidelines which covers honey for resale...there you have it...from the horse's mouth so to speak
    Double check for sure but ...

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Ontario
    Posts
    55

    Default Re: Ontario grading regulation

    So I am just starting out, and new to this forum! Been working so hard researching about bees, came time to figure out how to sell it! To what extent do these laws apply? Would you need federally inspecting honey to sell at a farmers market?

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