Bees And Their Natural Preservatives - Deepstash

Bees And Their Natural Preservatives

The reason for honey’s eternal life when kept sealed, are bees.

Their wings dry out the moisture in the nectar and their stomach have an enzyme called glucose oxidase, which helps in making a natural preservative called hydrogen peroxide.

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MORE IDEAS FROM The Science Behind Honey’s Eternal Shelf Life

Honey In The Pyramids

Egyptian tombs excavated by modern archaeologists unearthed preserved pots of honey, which were thousands of years old, and yet unspoiled.

Pure honey, a hygroscopic food, remains preserved in a ready-to-eat form, and is medicinal in nature, unlike other resilient foods like dried rice or salt.

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The Sumerian clay tablets have a record of the medicinal properties of honey, and the ancient Egyptians used it for medicinal purposes regularly, from skin ointments to any eye diseases.

Even modern medicine has started using honey-covered bandages that are used in hospitals.

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  • Part of the magic is that honey, which is basically a kind of sugar, has a negligible amount of moisture that does not let any bacteria or microorganisms spoil it.
  • Honey is also acidic, which does not let things survive in it.
  • Other hygroscopic sugars like molasses have a similar chemical makeup, and yet honey does not spoil(if not left out in the open for long) but molasses does.

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Honey bought from the supermarket is processed and does not change its properties, as it does not have any particulates.

The honey from the farm has pollen, enzymes and other particulates, which can make it crystallized, but still unspoiled.

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Where honey comes from
  • Honey is made by bees. Bees eat nectar, a sugar-rich liquid that is produced by flowers.
  • The bee stores most of the nectar in their "honey stomach." At the hive, bees regurgitate the nectar, blowing bubbles to evaporate the water. They also mix the nectar with their digestive enzymes, which break down the sugar, starch, and protein in the nectar, making it more acidic.
  • Then the bees deposit the nectar into the honeycomb, where more water evaporates, and add caps to the honeycomb to seal the honey inside, ready for later consumption by larvae or adults when food is scarce.
  • Beekeepers remove some honeycomb from hives and spin it to extract the thick liquid from inside. They filter out any beeswax or other debris, then bottle it.

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Understanding how long food lasts

Should humanity face a nuclear apocalypse of worldwide war, we need to understand which foods might be safe for survivors to eat, and how long the foods will last.

To understand this, we need to ask what makes food spoil.

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The Most Coveted  Honey

Manuka honey from New Zealand is the world’s most coveted honey. It’s supposedly unique healing properties make it a high-demand consumable in the elite circles. It is derived from the nectar of a native bush called leptospermum scoparium and is has been enjoying a boom in popularity in the last 30 years. 

In 2017 for example, the annual shipment of the manuka honey industry was $270 million.

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