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Thread: Solid rape honey

  1. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rosie View Post
    I lift out the cake by screwing in a cork screw. The honey recovered at this stage is saved for cooking because the enzymes will have been killed.

    Rosie
    And the buildup of hydroxymethylfurfural which i believe is really bad for bees, so dont give them the cooked honey back!
    From what wikipedia hast to say about hmf:

    HMF is practically not present in fresh food, but it is naturally generated in sugar-containing food during heat-treatments like drying or cooking. Along with many other flavor- and colour-related substances, HMF is formed in the Maillard reaction as well as during caramelization. In these foods it is also slowly generated during storage. Acid conditions favour generation of HMF.[8]

    HMF can be found in low amounts in honey, fruit-juices and UHT-milk. Here as well as in vinegars, jams, alcoholic products or biscuits HMF can be used as an indicator for excess heat-treatment. For instance, fresh honey only has low amounts of HMF—less than 15 mg/kg—depending on pH-value and temperature and age,[9] and the codex alimentarius standard requires that honey have less than 40 mg/kg HMf to guarantee that the honey has not undergone heating during processing, except for tropical honeys which must be below 80 mg/kg.

    HMF can form in high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS), levels around 20 mg/kg HMF were found, increasing during storage or heating.[9] This is a problem for American beekeepers because they use HFCS as a source of sugar when there are not enough nectar sources to feed honeybees, and HMF is toxic to them. Adding bases such as soda ash or potash to neutralize the HFCS slows down the formation of HMF.[9]
    Last edited by Calum; 06-09-2011 at 07:01 PM. Reason: added wikipedia info

  2. #12
    Senior Member Adam's Avatar
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    Rosie,
    How do you test for enzyme activity?
    Last edited by Adam; 06-09-2011 at 07:28 PM.

  3. #13
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    Calum

    I agree with your HMF point. The quantity of HMF is inversely proportional to the enzyme activity and if you can get one property right with a healthy margin you can be fairly sure that the other is within spec. I have no way of measuring HMF anyway so I have to make do with the Glucose oxidase activity test.

    Adam,

    I twice posted quite a detailed explanation on the dying forum but I can explain briefly again here:

    Dissolve honey sample in distilled room temp water at the ratio of 1 part honey to 4 parts water by weight.
    Allow to stand for 1 hour at room temp.
    Dip a peroxide test strip into the solution for a few seconds and then shake off surplus liquid.
    Wait specified time (whatever it says on the test strip packaging).
    Compare the colour of the wetted end with colour charts which came with the test strips.
    Read off Hydrogen peroxide concentration in parts per million.
    I believe that 2 parts per million is roughly equivalent to the legal minimum enzyme activity and maximum HMF allowances.
    I like at least 8 parts per million to give me a decent margin
    Good, cold processed honey will yield about 20 parts per million so 8 parts per million is easily obtained.

    I hope that helps but if you want further details I will try to find the original document.

    Rosie

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    Thanks Rosie, really appreciate the advice, Mike

  5. #15

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    Extract oilseed rape honey as soon as possible from the combs. They can be taken from the hive as soon as a shaken comb does not shed any drops of honey, even though it is not capped. To achieve this it is best to put the clearer boards on first thing in the morning, after the night when the bees have not added more and have had the whole night to ripen the contents.

    Extract the frames and, if there is any chance of the honey sitting in the tank and solidifying, run it immediately into 7 or 10 pound plastic pails, seal them, and put them in the deep freeze. Leave for 3-6 months. When you remove the pails, you absolutely must allow them to return to room temp before removing the lid, otherwise condensation will form on the honey surface and spoil it. When you do open them, the honey will have the consistency of thick cream and the lustre of a pearl! Now bottle it. This method is foolproof, and works every time.

  6. #16
    Senior Member Mellifera Crofter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rosie View Post
    ... I then put the tank in my warming cabinet set at about 50 degs c and let the honey melt. Rosie
    It's my turn to struggle with a few frames of OSR honey.

    What is a safe temperature for heating OSR honey without losing too much nutrients or building up HMF - about 50C maximum?

    I borrowed the association's extractor, but I was already too late for that. Then I broke up the combs and tried to strain it, but only some honey went through the strainer and the rest is still on top as broken comb. I've now borrowed a mini melter from the association and thought I'll start off by following Rosie's advice and setting the temperature at 50C.

    Is it possible to liquefy OSR honey without using heat - for example, by using a propeller-type mixer to liquefy it?

    Kitta

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    There is a chart around somewhere, possibly on Dave cushman's site that lists approximate times that you can heat honey at a given temperature before HMF buildup is likely to be a problem, when I'm on a device more suitable I'll try and dig it up.

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    Kitta

    I doubt if you will ever melt the OSR honey crystals with anything other than heat. The safe heating temperature depends on the time it's exposed to the heat. 50 degs will affect enzymes in an hour or so but will have a tiny effect on HMF. However, the granulated comb seems to be a good insulator and it takes days for the heat to penetrate the honey bucket in sufficient quantities to cause all the crystals to melt. Hence if you regularly drain the melted honey from the heated tank it does not get exposed to high temperatures for very long although the whole process might take a couple of days.

    Rosie

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    Senior Member Mellifera Crofter's Avatar
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    Thanks Nellie and Rosie. I'll start the heating process with caution and remove the liquid honey as you've suggested, Rosie. I had a quick look at the Cushman site, Nellie, and I found a page on HMF. From that page it seems to me he is saying what Rosie is saying - the faster I can remove the liquid honey from the heat, the better.

  10. #20
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    No argument from me on that point.

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