Pine honey


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  • Pine honey
    Pine honey

Pine honey is a type of honeydew honey. It is produced by honey bees that collect honeydew (sugary secretions) from a scale insect species, Marchalina hellenica, which lives on the sap of certain pine trees. When the scale insects feed, they excrete waste in the form of honeydew. Depending on local honey production laws, the product is sometimes not allowed to be classified as honey.

In other languages, pine honey is referred to in various ways. In the Serbian and Croatian languages, the word for honey is "med," but when it is made of insect honeydew, it is called "meduljak" or "medula". In Romanian, it is called miere de pădure, meaning "forest honey", or miere de mană, meaning "manna honey."

The pine species on which Marchalina hellenica can be found include the Turkish Pine (Pinus brutia) and, to a lesser extent, Aleppo Pine (Pinus halepensis), Scots Pine (Pinus sylvestris) and Stone Pine (Pinus pinea). The insects hide in the cracks and under the scales of the bark of these trees, beneath a white cotton-like wax they secrete.

The physical characteristics of pine honey are controlled by the higher resin and lower water content of the Marchalina hellenica honeydew from which it is made. Color is always darker than medium honey but typically lighter than buckwheat honey; density and viscosity are both higher than medium honey; smell and taste are reminiscent of pine sap. Because of its high density, some consumers say that pine honey is superior in its ability to satisfy the appetite.

Pine honey is found in areas where pine forests are plentiful during the honey collection season, and conventional sources, such as flowers or fruit tree blossoms, are few. It is produced mostly in the Middle East, the Balkans, Serbia and on several Greek islands.

The approximately 65% ​​of total honey production in Greece comes from the pines. The pine, indeed, considered the most important bee plant of our country. The main pine honey production areas are the northern Euboea, the Halkidiki, Thassos, Skopelos, Zakynthos and Rhodes.

Taste: Due to the low concentration of sugars, not too sweet.

Aroma: Of particular. Some of them resemble the iodine flavor.

Color: The pine honey is darker than thyme. One thing indeed produced spring is paler and more transparent than that produced in the autumn.

Krystallosi: The pine drool relatively slowly, since the natural content of glucose is low. Specifically, pure pine remain fluid, ie without crystallization, for more than half years.

Nutritional value: The pine is considered highly nutritious honey and this is mainly due to the large number of different substances present in the establishment. Since these substances are dominated by metals and minerals (calcium, magnesium, zinc, iron, copper, etc.), Which are found in large concentrations in Greek pine.