Honey is one of the miracles that nature has given to man! Some sources cite, as experimentally and clinically established, the following beneficial properties of honey: Antibacterial immuno-modulating antiviral soothing early healing antioxidant and this is not even a complete list! The composition of honey includes such essential ingredients for the human body as minerals. It contains 37 types of macro- and microelements, the main ones being potassium, calcium, magnesium, iron, phosphorus. In addition to minerals, honey contains vitamins, the content of which depends on the predominance of certain types of pollen in it. Honey owes its medicinal properties largely to the content of phytoncides in it – these are natural antibiotics of plant origin, contained in pollen. Natural honey is dominated by the content of benzoic acid, which has the property of preventing the development and growth of bacteria.
At present, in order to save money, as well as due to ignorance of honey processing technology, the market is overflowing with products that do not have the declared qualities. It is possible to carry out an express analysis of the quality of honey outside laboratory conditions according to the following indicators:
1) Color. Each type of honey has its own shade, it depends on the main melliferous plant, and in the process of crystallization, honey loses its transparency and becomes thick. For example, lime and sweet clover honey varieties are distinguished by light shades, buckwheat honey, on the contrary, has a rich dark golden color. However, a sign of quality is the uniform honey color and uniform consistency. The presence of foreign inclusions is not allowed.
2) Smell. The aroma of honey should be clean, pleasant, slightly spicy, more pronounced for some varieties, less for some. Odors unusual for honey (sour smell, aromatic additives, caramel) can cause rejection. To enhance the smell, place a small amount of honey in a clean container, close it with a lid and heat for 10 minutes in a water bath at a temperature not exceeding 40 C.
3) Taste. The taste of real honey never deceives – it is bitter and sore in the throat, up to a slight burning sensation. The brightness of sensations depends on the selected variety – some have a very light bitterness, at the level of aftertaste. There are no foreign flavors in such honey. Pronounced sour notes indicate the presence of water and the beginning of the fermentation process. Most often this happens when pumping out unripe honey, which contains a lot of water. During the ripening process, the liquid almost completely evaporates. In the taste of honey, to which sugar has been added, there is no bitterness, but an excessive sugary sweetness is felt.
Starting a conversation about the crystallization of honey, it should be noted that this process is natural and begins in any kind of natural honey sooner or later, while there are no changes in the chemical composition of honey. So, what is crystallization, or, in simpler terms, cage, sugar candling of honey? This is the process of transition of honey from liquid to solid state. The emergence of this phenomenon is due to the fact that the honey extracted from the bee hive and delivered to production is in an unstable state. Gradually, the sugar spectrum of mature honey, represented mainly by glucose and fructose, starts the crystallization process. In addition, the temperature also affects the rate of crystallization (honey crystallizes most quickly at 10-15 C) and the duration of honey storage. Depending on the size of the crystals formed, fat-like, fine-grained and coarse-grained crystallization of honey is distinguished.
Beekeeping in Bashkortostan has deep historical roots, thousands of years of experience and traditions. This was favored by the unique honey collection conditions, the Bashkir population of honey bees, well adapted to the local climate, the high skill of beekeepers, the presence of educational institutions for the training of highly qualified personnel and enterprises for the production of bee stock and foundation.
Honey is collected by bees of a special Bashkir breed from numerous and diverse medicinal plants growing on the territory of the republic. Experts note an increased content of pollen from many plants in Bashkir honey. The organoleptic characteristics of honey (aroma, taste and color) correspond and even exceed the parameters provided for by the strict Russian GOST and European regional standards, which indicates its excellent quality.
To understand why honey from Bashkortostan has wonderful qualities, you should pay attention to our geographical position – the territory of Bashkiria is located in a temperate climate zone. The summer here is quite warm and humid. The winter is mild, which ensures a favorable wintering for the bees. High humidity and hilly terrain provide favorable conditions for the abundant secretion of nectar by melliferous plants. This directly affects the saturation of the resulting honey.
The flora of this region is also diverse. On the territory of Bashkortostan, there are about four hundred types of honey plants. Their flowering time varies from early spring to late autumn, which provides a continuous flow throughout the season. There are 3 reserves, 29 reserves, 5 natural parks, 183 natural monuments in the republic.
The total area of specially protected natural areas is 1,064.7 thousand hectares (6.9% of the area of Bashkortostan). Beekeeping in Bashkortostan is the oldest type of trade. It developed in several directions: wild, onboard, distillation, block, frame. The Bashkir beekeeping was first described in 1767-1769. At the end of the 19th century, frame beekeeping was introduced in Bashkiria and the first apiaries were organized in frame hives. By the beginning of the 50s of the XX century, the transfer of bee colonies from decks to frame hives was completed in the Bashkir ASSR.
The foundations of scientific beekeeping in Bashkortostan were laid in 1930 by the creation of an experimental beekeeping station and the training of beekeepers in the Yumatov Beekeeping College since 1932. Since 1964, the department of beekeeping was opened at the Bashkir Agricultural Institute. On July 2, 1997, a law on beekeeping was adopted in Bashkortostan. The law describes the participation of the state and citizens in the development of beekeeping, taxation, state control and protection of bees, the placement of apiaries, and accounting for the number of bee colonies.
A beekeeping agency has been established in the republic; interdistrict departments of the Agency with subordinate regional trade and procurement points; the district beekeeping inspectors work with the management of trade and procurement points. The Bashkir population of bees is characterized by winter hardiness, resistance to European foulbrood, nosematosis, and honeydew toxicosis, as well as high honey productivity with a short honey harvest (for example, from linden). Bashkir bees have a dry seal of honey highly valued by beekeepers.
The composition of Bashkir honey, obtained from melliferous grasses and plants, which abound in our land, includes many substances useful for the body: potassium, iron, sulfur, sodium, phosphorus, calcium; useful amino acids, enzymes and proteins; vitamins A, B, E, K and PP; folic acid; cholines, tannins and essential oils. Enriching the body with trace elements, this honey strengthens the immune system.
The composition of the Bashkir honey, obtained from melliferous herbs and plants, which abound in our land, includes many substances useful for the body:
✓ useful amino acids;
✓ enzymes and proteins;
✓ vitamins A, B, E, K and PP.
Enriching the body with trace elements, this honey strengthens the immune system.
The value of honey is determined by the diastase number – the amount of enzymes per unit volume.
The higher this number, the more valuable the honey. In honey from the southern regions of the Russian Federation, the diastase number is 5-8, in Far Eastern honey – up to 18, in Bashkir – 22-50.