What is raw honey?
Raw honey is not heat-treated or processed and contains no additional ingredients. The taste, aroma and consistency of raw honey varies depending on the nectar source. Find out more about the difference between raw honey and processed honey here.
How is Baltic Honey Shop's honey different from processed honeys?
We believe our honey is far superior to processed honeys in terms of taste and healthful properties. Processed honeys are generally blended from honeys of various qualities from different locations. They are heat-treated and processed to achieve a uniform and consistent taste and a runny, translucent texture that is generally known as honey. This process strips the honey of many of its valuable, beneficial components and also homogenizes its taste and texture. Our different honeys are harvested using traditional methods and no ingredients are added during collection and handling. This means that our honeys retain all their healthful properties and their own unique tastes and aromas.
Where is Baltic Honey Shop’s honey from?
All our honey is sourced from Lithuania, a country with a long tradition of beekeeping. Lithuanian bees are among the healthiest in Europe, according to the EU’s comprehensive Epilobee study (2012-2014). The study covered 17 EU countries and almost 32,000 bee colonies. Lithuanian bee colonies had the lowest mortality rates across the EU over the period under study.
Is Baltic Honey Shop organic and non-GMO?
Baltic Honey Shop’s honeys are not heat-treated or processed and contain no additives. However since bees are free to harvest nectar wherever they desire, our honey is not certified “organic”. Honey is generally accepted to be non-GMO since honey bees are not genetically modified. In addition, Lithuania has banned cultivation of GMOs in its territory since 2015.
Which honey should I get? How do I choose?
Light honeys generally have a mild taste and the darker the honey the stronger the taste. Our mildest tasting honey is Orchard honey, while Forest Field honey has a mild berry flavour. Linden honey has a wonderful aroma much like linden blossoms, with a mild citrus flavour and a cool aftertaste. Sweet Field honey is a very sweet honey with a warm aftertaste. Buckwheat honey has a strong buckwheat aroma (sometimes described as a farmyard smell!) and a strong flavour, with the aftertaste sometimes described as being bitter or like molasses. Dark Wood also has a strong taste, which has been compared to treacle or toffee.
Dark Wood honey and Linden honey are quite soft in consistency and are easily spreadable. Orchard honey, Forest Field honey and Buckwheat honey are firmer in consistency but are still spreadable. Sweet Field honey is our most firmly set honey and it also has a grainy consistency which makes it ideal for use in scrubs and other beauty treatments.
Why does my jar of honey look different to the one on the website?
Raw honey is a natural product, much like olive oil, which differs depending on the hive and the time of harvest. Even within a particular variety of honey, the appearance of each jar will not be exactly the same. Our pictures show that our honeys have crystallized but the rate of crystallization depends on the particular honey and is an entirely natural process. Our traditional harvesting methods also retain pollen, bits of wax and other gifts of the hive in the honey itself, which may be visible in your jar of honey. These are safe to eat and can easily be dispersed by stirring.
My jar of honey is solid. Can I still eat it?
Yes, your jar of honey is perfectly good to eat. Crystallization is actually a sign that the honey is of a high quality and has not been heat-treated or processed. Crystallization also preserves the flavours and beneficial qualities of raw honey. Almost all raw honeys crystallize over time after being removed from the warm environment of the hive (around 35°C). This consistency is perfect for spreading over toast and many people prefer it this way.
My honey is too firm for my liking. What should I do?
If your honey is a bit too firm for your liking, we recommend placing the jar in a warm place. Sometimes just letting it sit there and stirring it briskly can get it to a more preferable texture. We have posted a video of this on our Instagram page. Or you can place a bit of the honey in a bowl in a larger pot of hot (but not boiling) water, stirring it while it softens. We do not recommend microwaving your raw honey as this destroys the valuable enzymes and nutrients in it.
The honey in my jar has separated. Why has this happened?
Honey may separate into runny and solid components because the two main naturally-occurring sugars in honey crystallize at different rates. Honey is comprised mainly of glucose, fructose, and other more complex sugars such as maltose. Of these, glucose tends to crystallize quite quickly but the other sugars take a longer time to crystallize and may even remain runny in a warm environment. The crystallized glucose will usually clump together and separate from the other sugars. In our honeys with more glucose, crystallization occurs throughout the honey so this separation is less likely to occur. Honey that has been stored in a cool place is also less likely to separate since more of the sugars are likely to remain crystallized.
How should I store my honey?
We recommend storing the honey in the jar or a covered container at room temperature away from direct sunlight. There is no need to refrigerate after opening.
Will my honey spoil?
Honey does not spoil because of its nature. It contains a concentrated amount of natural sugars dissolved in very little moisture, which prevents spoilage once it is properly stored. Our best before dates are a commercial requirement, which are intended as a guideline. Our honey should be perfectly good to eat after these dates. However, remember to avoid getting bits of food in the honey, as this can cause spoilage.