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The Science Behind Honey’s Eternal Shelf Life

Farm Honey And Supermarket Honey

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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The Science Behind Honey’s Eternal Shelf Life

The Science Behind Honey’s Eternal Shelf Life

https://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/the-science-behind-honeys-eternal-shelf-life-1218690/

smithsonianmag.com

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Key Ideas

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.

Honey: The Eternal Food

  • 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.

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.

Honey As An Ancient Medicine

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.

Farm Honey And Supermarket Honey

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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