Natural, raw, and unfiltered honey is versatile and incredibly delicious. What’s more, honey never goes off. In fact, archaeologists have found honey in ancient Egyptian tombs to be as good as the day it was first sealed! We believe this to be a unique and notable tribute to honey’s everlasting shelf-life.
To fully understand honey's un-bee-lievable shelf life, it is necessary to break down its composition, as well as the bees’ honey-making process.
Firstly, honey is primarily made of sugar. Sugar is naturally low in moisture which means that bacteria and microorganisms are unable to grow and thrive. The absence of breeding grounds for bacteria and microorganisms enables the honey to maintain its freshness and stops it becoming contaminated.
Secondly, honey is very acidic and similar to its high sugar content, the acidity prevents bacteria from spoiling the honey. The acidic composition comes from gluconic acid which is broken down from glucose by an enzyme in the bees stomach. After being broken down numerous times, the honeybees store it in the honeycomb. This may be surprising for something that tastes so sweet!
Thirdly, the processing of the honey inside the beehive creates a compound called hydrogen peroxide which is another reason why the bacteria is unable to spoil the honey. The hydrogen peroxide also has antibacterial properties which is why honey serves as an effective wound treatment.
To find out more on honey’s magical medical properties, check out our blog post Medical Magic: The Buzz around Honey!
It is important to note that whilst honey doesn’t have an expiration date, it can still undergo natural changes. Over time your honey may become darker in colour, thicker in consistency, and different in taste, but not to worry, these slight changes are in fact a positive sign that the honey is high quality and is unpasteurized.
Together, these factors explain why honey is able to last for so long and why it can still be found in ancient tombs. So, the next time you reach for your Beeble honey and wonder; has my honey gone off? Do I need to get a new jar? Think again! Since Beeble honey is 100% natural, it has the potential to last for decades and even centuries!