Charleston Local Honey: Much More than Just a Sweet Treat
Honey is a natural sweetener that has been utilized by humankind for thousands of years. Before the introduction of cane sugar, honey was the primary sweetener of foods. Today, despite the wide array of sweeteners available, honey remains one of the best and natural sweeteners. Besides adding a tantalizing zing to foods and beverages, honey functions as a healing and rejuvenating ingredient.
Today, with the bad rap refined sugar continues to endure, we consume more honey in the US than the hunter-gatherers from days gone by could imagine. Americans consume over 450 million pounds of honey. That's a lot of honey, considering one bee produces only about one half of a teaspoon during its lifetime.
But, not all honey contains the same nutritious or wellness properties. Most of the honey purchased in conventional grocery stores lands on the shelf only after undergoing a heating and pasteurization process.
Raw honey is unprocessed honey that retains all of its natural nutritional value. The numerous trace amounts of minerals in honey include calcium, zinc, phosphorus, iron, and more. You will find several of the B vitamins in honey as well as antioxidants. The enzymes in honey aid in digestion and the trace amounts of pollen can help reduce the effects of seasonal allergies.
But, in addition to raw honey, raw local honey takes the health advantage a step further. Loosely defined, local honey comes from hives where the bees produce the honey from local flora and plants. Local honey typically comes from hives from five to one hundred miles away.
Why Eat Local Honey?
Raw honey, in general, contains all kinds of health benefits. But, several reasons exist to buy and consume local honey:
- Local honey contains the optimum amount of nutrients.
- When you buy local honey, you support your local beekeepers and your community. Since 2006, the occupation of beekeepers has begun facing unprecedented challenges. Between 2006 and 2007, over 10 million beehives disappeared due to Colony Collapse Disorder or CCD. CCD happens when all the adult bees abandon the queen due to pesticides and other chemicals, parasites, and stress.
- Local honey may represent a treatment for seasonal allergies. Though more scientific research needs conducting, you'll find plenty of anecdotal evidence as hay fever sufferers' flock to their nearby farmer's markets to get their hands on the local honey. Using honey to relieve allergies follows the same principles as allergy shots. Tiny amounts of the offending pollen in the honey provide the same kind of immunity as do the allergy shots.
- By purchasing local honey, you help protect the environment. Not only do bees depend on local flora, fruits, and vegetables to produce their honey, the plants also rely on the bees to flourish.
How to Use Local Honey:
The deliciousness of raw local honey might tempt you to devour it right out of the jar, but consider the following suggestions for consuming honey:
- Sweeten your coffee and tea with a teaspoon of honey.
- Use honey in baking and candy making instead of refined sugar.
- Honey on your toast with or without peanut butter makes a delicious breakfast.
- A teaspoon of honey for a cough or sore throat provides instant relief. Try mixing a teaspoon of honey with a teaspoon of apple cider vinegar and a dash of pepper in four ounces of tepid water. Gargle with the mixture to help relieve the pain and inflammation of a sore throat.
- If you like to make your cosmetics, you'll find plenty of recipes on the internet, from healing salves to face masks calling for raw honey.
We've Got a Honey for Everybody:
No, we're not in the matchmaking business, but our friendly and knowledgeable staff does work with beekeepers in the Mid-Atlantic, New England, and Southeastern regions to provide some of the best regional honey you will find anywhere.
You'll taste our commitment to your health, the beekeepers' sustainability, and the environment in every jar of our regional honey.
What's So Special About Southern Wildflower Honey?
Southern Wildflower honey is the crown jewel of our regional honey series, but we might be a little biased. It's from our own backyard! Not literally, of course. This honey is harvested from bee yards throughout the Lowcountry of South Carolina. As a local Charleston honey, Southern Wildflower honey earned the title of a certified South Carolina product and its flavor will be representative of the flora in the region.
With the rich and vast flora of the South Carolina low country, Southern Wildflower honey will vary from batch to batch depending on what plants were blooming during the pollination process.
If you still want to learn more about our honey and our relationships with beekeepers, we'd love to hear from you. Contact us here for more information.