Frequently asked questions

Frequently Asked Questions

Bee swarm found?
Have you found a bee swarm? Do not panic. A swarm is not dangerous. Keep calm and keep your distance. Call a beekeeper. This one likes to come by to collect the swarm.
You can find beekeepers in your area on the website of the Dutch Bee Association:

What is a Bee Swarm?
In the months of May and June and sometimes also in July, bee colonies multiply. They do this by a so-called swarm. A large part of the colony, several thousand bees, takes off with the queen in their midst. They are looking for a new home.
Before they find this, the swarm makes a stopover. They form a clump of bees on a tree branch, a fence or an eaves. They stay there for a few hours to sometimes a few days. In the meantime, scouts start looking for a new 'home'.
Although a bee swarm may look menacing, it is not dangerous. Bees are not out to sting you. They are just passing through and have nothing to defend.

Manuka-Kanuka honey
De Traay's Manuka-Kanuka honey comes from the subtropical forests of New Zealand. The nectar of the honey is collected by the bees from the flowers of the Manuka shrub also called 'tea-tree'. De Traay has been selling pure organic Manuka for years, and Kanukapollen was found in our honey during the last harvest. Kanuka is even less known. Kanuka, also called white tea tree, is, just like Manuka, family of the tea tree.

Manuka is sometimes referred to as a UMF value. De Traay has been getting Manuka honey from New Zealand for many years, long before there was a UMF (MGO) factor. UMF is a registered trademark (so you have to pay to use it). This is one reason why we do not use a UMF factor, but also because we find the factor too opaque, we do not use the gradation system. De Traay had the honey tested in an independent laboratory and it appears that the Manuka-Kanuka honey has an MGO value of 100.

Why does honey crystallize (saccharify) in the jar?
Any type of honey tends to crystallize over time. This is mainly due to the grape sugars (glucose) naturally present in honey. It has nothing to do with quality or shelf life. Just heat for 15 minutes au bain-marie (or just on the heating) to a maximum of 40ºC. (do not place in the microwave!*) and the honey is just as liquid as before.

* Important components such as enzymes, vitamins and amino acids are then lost.

Is sugar added to honey?
No! Honey contains enough natural sugars on its own and is 100% natural without any additives. Honey is increasingly being used as a sugar substitute.

What is the best way to store honey?
Honey is best kept at room temperature (19ºC.) in a dark and dry place, in a closed jar. The liquid honey may be slightly warmer (21-22ºC) than the cream honey, but this is not necessary.

How long can I store honey?
Actually, honey does not spoil. Honey does darken over time. We give our honey an expiration date of 2 years from the moment of processing/labelling.

What is the difference between organic honey and non-organic honey?
Organic honey is honey with a guarantee label, a quality mark, issued by an independent organization (SKAL).
De Traay checks the honey for origin (from biologically active beekeepers, honey from untouched nature, bee diseases are combated with natural means), for processing methods and for final quality.
However, all honey, organic and non-organic, is purely natural, without any additives!

What is the brown top layer at the top of the cream honey jar?
Due to a possibly too warm storage temperature, the cream honey has melted a bit at the top. Stir the honey together and it tastes delicious again.

What is the white layer at the top of the jar of flowing honey?
These are air bubbles. Honey contains very small air molecules, which are trapped in the honey and float to the surface after some time. Stir for a while and the honey is smooth again.

How healthy is honey?
Honey is not only tasty, it is also healthy, as are the other bee products such as royal jelly, propolis and pollen. Honey is a natural food without any additives. Honey has a high energy value and is therefore very good for children, the elderly and athletes. Honey is also a great remedy for colds. In addition, honey has a strong antibacterial effect in the treatment of wounds.

Why should babies not eat honey until their first year of life?
Honey is a product that is not pasteurized because it affects the natural composition of honey. Just like in raw milk cheese, for example