What determines the color of honey: why the product changes shade, how to identify a fake

What determines the color of honey: why the product changes shade, how to identify a fake

The color of honey tells about its origin, from which plants it is collected. This also affects its characteristics, properties, taste and aroma, shelf life, consistency. Consider what colors the bee product comes in, what determines the color of bee honey, whether the product can change color and why this happens. What artificial honey looks like and how to distinguish it from natural.

What colors honey comes in

The color of the bee product can be different: light - from whitish to yellow, dark - from dark yellow to brownish. Dark varieties are obtained from chestnut, mountain ash, buckwheat, heather, forbs, forest flowers, hawthorn, angelica, milkweed.

Light are obtained from acacia, sunflower, May or meadow flowers, linden, cotton, clover, coriander. The same shade can be obtained from the flowers of phacelia, fireweed, cornflowers, sainfoin, sweet clover, rapeseed, lavender, sow thistle, burdock. After crystallization, any of them lightens a little, this is a natural process.

What determines the color of honey

Color depends on substances contained in pollen and nectar collected by insects from flowers. Anthocyanins give the product dark shades - brownish and reddish. The same shades can be formed from the interaction of metals with flavonoids. Yellow of different shades and light green color give the product carotenoids in combination with glucose. The darkening of honey is due to oxidation, the darker the mass, the greater the acidity.

The natural color of the product is associated with the composition of the nectar, the properties of the land on which the plants grew, the duration of the honey flow. It also depends on the productivity and type of plants, as well as on weather conditions during the collection period.

With a long bribe, the liquid is transparent. The shade depends on the age and breed of insects - bees with different proboscis lengths choose flowers from which it is easier for them to collect nectar.

Why honey changes color

When heated under the same conditions, it can change color, this is affected by the amino acid composition. So, for example, clover practically does not change, and buckwheat becomes even darker. The most noticeable changes occur with honeydew honey. Freshly pumped is darker at first, but also changes color over time, becoming lighter after crystallization.

What artificial honey looks like

The product is obtained from sugar-containing raw materials by hydrolysis with organic acids, usually citric. The product is made from cane sugar, corn, juice of berries and fruits, tea decoctions, medicinal herbs or artificial dyes are used to give color.The mass is evaporated until the required density is obtained.

This product contains almost no vitamins, it does not contain useful substances, enzymes, it cannot be used as a medicine. It contains up to half glucose and fructose, a third of sucrose and up to 20% water. In appearance, it is more liquid than natural, it crystallizes only partially, therefore it is not intended for long-term storage. It is used in confectionery for baking cakes, rolls as a cheap substitute for bee products.

You can distinguish artificially obtained honey by taste and aroma, even if they are similar in color and consistency. It does not have a characteristic bitterness, it is sweeter, has the smell of fruits, not flowers.

The color of honey can tell which plant it comes from. Connoisseurs determine this by appearance. The type of plant determines the properties of the product, its medicinal qualities. Therefore, if honey is used not only for nutrition, but for treatment, you should pay attention to its appearance.If it differs from the characteristic, it may be a fake.

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