Cloudy Honey
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Thread: Cloudy Honey

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Woodstock, GA
    Posts
    63

    Default Cloudy Honey

    I took some honey off the hives yesterday and it is very cloudy. Filtered it through the screens like in years past but have never seen it this cloudy. Any speculation on why this has happened? The frames were capped and I did everything exactly like I have the past ten years. This is the first time I have ever experienced this and am wondering if there is anything I can do to clarify the honey.

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    May 2019
    Location
    Lake County, Illinois
    Posts
    72

    Default Re: Cloudy Honey

    Can you explain how you uncapped it, type of filters, extracted it and bottled it. Then we can possibly help.
    Quote Originally Posted by Dubuquer View Post
    I took some honey off the hives yesterday and it is very cloudy. Filtered it through the screens like in years past but have never seen it this cloudy. Any speculation on why this has happened? The frames were capped and I did everything exactly like I have the past ten years. This is the first time I have ever experienced this and am wondering if there is anything I can do to clarify the honey.

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Woodstock, GA
    Posts
    63

    Default Re: Cloudy Honey

    Quote Originally Posted by Plannerwgp View Post
    Can you explain how you uncapped it, type of filters, extracted it and bottled it. Then we can possibly help.
    Used a hot knife to uncap and filtered through two metal screens. Bottled it out of a five gallon bucket with a gate on the bottom.

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Aylett, Virginia
    Posts
    3,396

    Default Re: Cloudy Honey

    Try heating one jar and see if the cloudiness goes away. Could be micro sugar crystals. Assuming it is not pollen and the honey is not fermented.
    Thankfully, the bees are smarter than I am. They are doing well, in spite of my efforts to help them.

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2016
    Location
    Geauga, Ohio
    Posts
    409

    Default Re: Cloudy Honey

    Hmmm.... when I have gotten cloudy honey, it was when I crushed and strained honey that had pollen in the cells. Any chance that when you were uncapping, you uncapped some cells with pollen? In that case, label it as pollen-infused honey! but it will ferment sooner than clear honey, so use small containers, tell customers that it has a 6 month shelf life or freeze. I would not use it for sale to a store, where it may sit for awhile.

    Honey that is starting to crystallize has also been cloudy, but also very sluggish moving. I don't know that it would readily extract?


    There wasn't any drone brood in the super, was there? then, I guess it's royal-jelly infused honey - but I think you would have noticed larvae etc in the filter, post extractor.

    Anyways, check with your local beeks - any sense when that nectar was harvested? when you put super on? where it was in the "order" - first on, last on? that may narrow down the nectar source.

    Important thing - hope it tastes good!

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    Red Bud, IL, USA
    Posts
    1,788

    Default Re: Cloudy Honey

    Short answer is "don't have a proven explanation but you're not alone"

    Had cloudy honey last year and the first part of this year. Extracted capped honey, no pollen or brood, run through a 400 and 200 micron strainers; same result as OP, no difference in the process from previous years or the last extraction. No affect on texture or taste. A few other of the locals also experienced the same thing but it wasn't every yard that was affected, pretty hit or miss. Local weather last year was a year without a spring, something like the coldest Apr/May then going directly into summer heat; definitely changed the forage patterns/selection. A possible reason but still no good explanation for the cloudiness.

    Had a few jars of last year's cloudy honey that crystalized, as it was crystalizing it also started to clear. Theory being whatever was causing the cloudiness was precipitating out with the crystals. I poured the clear honey off the crystals for a closer look at the crystals, again couldn't detect any noticeable difference from any other crystalized honey, except a very light residue that was minimally separable and had no detectable texture or taste.

    Mid June extraction this year was cloudy but last week's extraction was very clear. I didn't pull any frames from the overwintered boxes so little chance of residual honey from last year in the June extraction. This spring/early summer was wet and seemed to expand/stretch the flow further into June/July. Again, nothing factual, just a possible cooler weather correlation SWAG.

    Explained last year's cloudiness to my normal customers as a change in forage due to the "no spring" and potential for "additional very fine pollen." Didn't receive any negative feedback.
    “The single biggest problem with communication is the illusion that it has taken place.” -George Bernard Shaw

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