Not all honey is created equally, so the quality is different. Both the price and the health benefits of honey are dependent on its quality, so it has become very important for the manufacturers and consumers to understand the various factors that affect the quality of honey. Some of these factors include the type of flowers used in the formation of the honeycombs, the blending process, storage conditions, the temperature of heating, and more. Let’s see these factors below in detail,
A)Type of flowers:
Source also decides the properties of honey. Different types of honey showed varying degrees of antibacterial activity. Clover honey showed the highest antibacterial activity, followed by citrus honey and cotton honey respectively.
Polyfloral honey (which is obtained from more than one flower) is more beneficial than monofloral. Hence, many companies are today selling blended honey as it offers multiple benefits.
When stored for a long duration, it becomes darker in color. It loses some of its properties and may also ferment if the water content is too high. So avoid prolong storage of honey. Newly harvested honey should be preferred when you are using it for the above-mentioned benefits.
Heating leads to drastic changes in its chemical composition. As a result, heating at high temperatures reduces its benefits. This is why many people prefer raw, organic, or raw organic honey. Raw by definition signifies less processing (and no heating). Organic honey is prepared using stringent organic production methods and processing standards, in which heating at high temperatures is not allowed.
It can also undergo fermentation. If the water content is high (above 19%), the chances of it becoming fermented are high. You can measure the water content using a refractometer. Furthermore, freely flowing honey either contains higher water content or has been heated to disturb the natural crystallization process, thereby reducing the benefits it will confer to you.
The color of honey is one way of judging its quality. Light-colored honey is usually preferred as it has a milder flavor. It can also be dark in color but it has a stronger flavor because of the flowers the bees collect it from.
Most of the benefits are due to the presence of the pollen within the honey. Without the pollen, it is a glucose-fructose solution and is just as bad for you as sugar. Unfortunately, companies market the transparent clear product as good quality, while in reality, ultra-filtered honey does not have many health benefits at all. You should be very cautious while consuming pollen-rich honey. If you have a pollen allergy, avoid consuming it.