Ohioans have been raising bees and collecting nectar to make honey since the mid-1800s, although the harvesting of honey dates back more than 8,000 years. Today, the Ohio honey industry includes a thriving collection of farms that produce a wide range of honey products, from raw comb honey to processed honey to beeswax candles.
History of Honey in Ohio:
Although collecting honey for food has been practiced since ancient times, beekeeping technology began in the early 19th century, in Europe and in Mexico. Ohio's early settlers brought the practice to the area and honey made a good alternative to difficult-to-get sugar. They also used honey for soaps, candles, and lip balms.
Ohio Honey Farms:
Northeast Ohio is home to a number of honey farms. Among these are:
Where to Buy Ohio Honey:
In addition to buying directly from the farms listed above, you can find Ohio honey at the following location:
Honey's Nutrition Value:
According to the National Honey Board, a tablespoon of honey has 64 calories and a small amount of vitamins, including niacin, riboflavin, pantothenic acid, calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, and zinc.
Of recent interest is the antioxidant content of honey. Honey contains a variety of flavonoids and phenolic acids which act as antioxidants, scavenging and eliminating free radicals. Generally, darker honeys have higher antioxidant content than lighter honeys.
Fun Honey Facts:
- A typical hive has between 20,000 and 40,000 worker bees and just one queen bee
- The honey bee has been in existence for millions of years.
- Bees can fly as fast as 15 mph.
- Bees have a range of about six miles.
- The average worker bee produces just 1/12 teaspoon of honey in its lifetime.
Types of Ohio Honey:
Among the varieties of honey produced in Ohio are pumpkin, clover, wildflower, sunflower, buckwheat, and goldenrod.
Cooking with Ohio Honey:
Below are just a few ways to use Ohio honey (all courtesy of the National Honey Board):
- Pumpkin Honey Bread
- Broiled Honey-Lemon Chicken Breasts
- Candied Yams
- Apple Honey Tart
Other Ohio food products: