top of page

The Real Greek Honey

bee17.jpg

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

GREEK  HONEY

Research conducted by the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, indicated that, after analysing 48 varieties of Honey had significantly more superior properties than the rest, even the world-famous Manuka Honey! Compared to Manuka Honey, Greek Honey was found to contain far more antioxidant properties. In particular, the varieties of Honey found to surpass Manuka Honey in quality were those made by bees feeding on oak tree, fir tree, heath, chestnut tree, pine tree, thyme and orange blossom The antioxidant properties of the aforementioned Honey varieties can be useful in eradicating the free radicals responsible for cell damage leading to illnesses like cancer. This means that the quality of Greek Honey is exceptional.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Greek honey is globally famous for its exceptional quality, its unique aroma and its rich taste. Its great diversity in terms of flavour and aroma sets it apart from its competitors, fuelling its international recognition. This advantage to a great extent derives from the rich Greek flora, which comprises numerous wild plants land herbs.

Greece despite its small size is one of the most suitable places, if not the most, for apiculture due to its rich flora and temperate climate.For that reason Greek Honey is unique. Honey

 is a traditional Greek product with many productive areas throughout the country. The best honey in Greece comes from thyme, by far the best honey in the world.

Greek honey has specific physical and chemical characteristics. Its supreme quality reflects the country's long sunshine periods and the abrupt changes in the landscape. This special landscape makes Greek flora so rich, that from the 7500 different species of plants growing in Greece, 850 of them are found exclusively here. That is the explanation why certain varieties of honey (e.g. Thyme Honey) do not exist anywhere else in the world. There are varieties that come from coniferous trees, and others that come from flowers and aromatic plants.

Honey is the complex substance made when the nectar and sweet deposits from plants and trees are gathered, modified and stored in the honeycomb by honey bees as a food source for the colony.

 Honey has a long history of human consumption, and is used in various foods and beverages as a sweetener and flavouring. It also has a role in religion and symbolism. Flavours of honey vary based on the nectar source, and various types and grades of honey are available. It is also used in various medicinal traditions to treat ailments.

 

HONEY IN ANCIENT GREECE

In ancient Greece, the bee, as well as its products, found itself in high place in the estimate of the people and the men in power. Proof of this constitutes the large quantity of mythological references and representations in ancient Greek vessels of mainly 6th century B.C. These facts prove the significant place of bee products in the daily life, as food but also as therapeutic means.

 

 - The importance of honey for the humans is praised in several classical texts of ancient Greece, such as Homer's Iliad and Odyssey, the Deipnosophists of Athenaeus, and in philosophical texts of Plato, Aristoteles, Democritus, and others.

 

- Sugar was unknown to Greeks so honey was used as their natural sweetener.

- Ambrosia and nectar, the food and drink of the Greek gods, were made of honey. Zeus "was raised on honey."

 

- The Iliad refers to honey as the food of kings.

 

- Honey was especially known for its nutritional and medicinal value.

 

- It is real that in ancient Greece, honey was used not only for its nutritional value but even for medical purposes inter alia.



Hippocrates ("the father of medicine") wrote, "Honey and pollen cause warmth, clean sores and ulcers, soften hard ulcers of lips, heal carbuncles and running Very few among the basic food products included in human diet, such as honey, enjoy global fame, which in turn is closely knit to the individual characteristics and traditions of each locality. Specifically to the Greek landscape, already from ancient times, our ancestors were well aware of the great nutritional value and would describe it with divine and reverent attributes. The most ancient character to appear in apiculture is Aristeos, one of the most enigmatic characters of ancient Greek folklore deities and the central character of the mythological circle of Kea.

 

Aristeos was the fruit of the union between Apollo and the nymph Cyrene. The moment he was born, Hermes handed him to Gaia and to the Ores (Hours) to raise. And it was they who fed the baby with drops of ambrosia and nectar through his lips so that he may become immortal. When Aristeos came of age, they trained him as an Oracle and a Doctor. From the Nymphs, he was taught grapevine culture, olive tree culture and apiculture, an art that would, from then on, characterise him more than any other. Kea is considered the first stop of Aristeos, where he taught the inhabitants of the island the art of apiculture. Therefore, Aristeos was, especially for the islanders of Kea, the first inventor of a series of useful arts, with most important that of the bee culture. Aristeos and the bee would become the basic symbols of the island and were depicted on coins of Ioulida, Karthea and Corisia. The myth of Aristeos stands proof of the existence of fervent apiculture in ancient times. One may find additional proof of that as one goes down historic times.

 

Aristotle’s works (322 B.C) proved to be a milestone so much in Ancient Greece but also in the rest of the civilised world of the times. Aristotle was the first to scientifically study the bee.

 

The father of Medicine, Hippocrates (462-352 B.C) prescribed honey to all people but especially to patients. They both believed that honey could prolong human's life.

 

Solon, the great law maker of Athens (640-558 B.C.) set out a number of legal measures pertaining to the apiculture of that period.

 

Democritus, in reply to whether it would be possible for humans to stay healthy and live longer, answered” “One should nourish his skin with olive oil and his insides with honey”.

 

Pythagoras and his followers considered honey as the main ingredient of their diet. 

                                                                                                                 
Ancient physicians used honey to treat diarrhea, constipation, and coughs and

 sometimes, ancient Greeks applied honey topically to prevent bodies from decaying. Oxymel, a mixture of water, honey, and vinegar, was a common medicinal drink in ancient Greece, used to treat what we now call the common cold.

 

Honey should be protected from oxidation and temperature degradation. It generally should not be preserved in metal containers because the acids in the honey may promote oxidation of the vessel. Traditionally, honey was stored in ceramic or wooden containers; however, glass and plastic are now the favoured materials. Honey stored in wooden containers may be discoloured or take on flavours imparted from the vessel. Likewise, honey stored uncovered near other foods may absorb other smells.

In jars, fresh honey should appear as a pure, consistent fluid, and should not set in layers. Within a few weeks to a few months of extraction, many varieties of honey crystallise into a cream - coloured solid. Some varieties of honey, including tupelo, acacia, and sage, crystallise less regularly. Honey may be heated during bottling at temperatures of 40–49°C (104–120°F) to delay or inhibit crystallisation.

Typical honey analysis

bee13.jpg
images bee2.jpg
Honey_400.jpeg
Honey_300.jpeg
Pollen_Propolis_Chios_Mastic_Honey.jpeg
Forest_Honey_Jars_300_400gr.jpeg
bottom of page