My bee hives produced excess honey for the first time in 2015. The bees did not produce any excess honey for the 2016 season.
The 2017 honey was light and flavorful and very well received (it is all gone except what I saved back to try making mead).
I am happy to be able offer honey again from the Fall of 2018! This year's honey was harvested a bit later (in September) and so the color is a deep amber and the flavor is *A*M*A*Z*I*N*G*! (If I do say so myself, LOL.) I've added a couple more labels to remind you NOT to give Raw Honey to children under 1 year of age AND that all Raw Honey crystallizes and that doesn't change it's nutritional value, flavor, etc. Instructions on how to liquify your crystallized honey is the other new label.
I had hoped to have at least 3 times more honey to sell this year (we had 3 times more mature hives going into the Spring), but between the CRP next to the farm being torn out (so many mature flowering trees destroyed), climate change and drought; we harvested only about 1/3 more honey than 2017.
As for 2019, we lost 6 hives this Spring and that leaves us with 3. The 2018 drought combined with the long Winter and the REALLY wet Spring have really knocked the honeybees for a loop. Even our remaining hives are struggling and, therefore, it is more important to us that they survive than provide us with honey to sell to you. This means there will NOT be a 2019 harvest of honey. Once the 2018 honey is gone, it is gone until (hopefully) the Fall of 2020.
Not to worry, though! I am NOT increasing the price you pay.
As with everything else, the honey is being sold direct, from the farm. I DO NOT SHIP HONEY.
There are NOW 3 packaging options for our 2018 RAW HONEY (see photo above) and they are a bit different from 2017:
Glass Jar, 16 oz./1 lb. (454 g) of Honey for $10.00 each.
Glass Jar, 32 oz./2 lbs. (907 g) of Honey for $20.00 each.
Glass Jar, 64 oz./4 lbs. (1814 g) of Honey for $40.00 each.
(Please note that while this is 64 oz. it is NOT a gallon because honey is old by weight, not volume.)
**SOLD OUT** Inverted Squeeze Bottle, 12 oz. (340 g) of Honey for $7.50 each. **BPA-free plastic**
**NO LONGER AVAILABLE** Bring Your Own Favorite Honey Container and I will weigh it, fill it with honey, weigh it again, subtract the original weight and you pay only for the honey at $0.625/oz.
If you are interested in larger quantities of honey, I will need to know that so I can get additional packaging. Contact me to reserve honey for you.
What makes honey "raw"? Raw honey is very simply honey that has not been heated. It retains all the nutrition and healthful qualities of honey in the comb. Here at PlayHaven Farm LLC, we simply uncap the comb (using a knife designed for that purpose), use gravity and centrifugal force to extract the honey, pour it through a 600 micron filter (to get any bug bits out) and bottle it.
Why is local, raw honey so highly recommended? Locally-sourced, raw honey is recommended over honey from other locations because you can be pretty sure the pollens and nectars the bees collect are the same ones that your allergies are triggered by. It is well documented that ingesting this honey has a similar affect as allergy treatments where you get minute amounts of the allergens that cause you problems. Just remember that honey is SUGAR (sucrose) and you need to account for that as well.
What happens when honey is heated? So long as you don't heat it to a temperature of more than 95 degrees F (the generally accepted maximum hive temperature), honey retains it's essential composition and beneficial enzymes. Heating at higher temps (98.6 degrees F) causes degradation of the components that make is so healthy and at boiling (104 degrees F) the important enzyme invertase is destroyed.
Why does raw honey crystalize? Storage temperature has an influence on how quickly any honey crystallizes. I store our honey in a controlled area with an air temperature that stays below 70 degrees F... 70 degrees F is considered a good temp to minimize crystallization. BUT, crystalization is not a problem to be solved! It is actually a clue that the honey is raw. I personally like it when the honey crystalizes because it is easier to scoop out of the jar. If you want to reliquify crystalized honey simply follow the instructions on the label.
RAW PROPOLIS - currently available at $8.00 per ounce. This is directly from the hive, use it as is or to make your own tincture. You are responsible for cleaning any bug and/or wood bits from it. Compare my price to prices on-line for processed propolis ($10 and up). Save yourself some money by doing the work.
BEES WAX - available in 1 oz. (28.34 g) ingots at $1.25 each. Use pure beeswax to make your own products! I did a search on-line to establish pricing and found it ranges vastly. I picked a price at the lower end of the spectrum for this first go round.
As things "ramp up" in the beekeeping area, I will be adding other bee related products.