The variety of honey
"The term single-variety honey refers to honeys whose botanical source consists largely of a single plant; the best known of these include sweet chestnut or acacia honey. Almost half of the 100 European single-variety honeys have their home in the Alps." (Text excerpt from the book "Honig der Alpen", authors Johannes Gruber and Dominik Flammer).
As indicated above, the varietal honeys do not consist 100% of the nectar of a single plant, since the bees always bring in parts from other plants. The proof of a variety of honey and its naming are based on precise laboratory analyzes in which the predominant proportion of a plant must exceed a defined percentage.
Every good honey is unique and reflects the landscape in which it was created, because the bees only collect the nectar and honeydew within a radius of around four kilometers from their location. If the honeys from different locations are mixed together in order to achieve larger sales volumes, the individual landscape character of the honey is lost.
Honey types differ not only in their origin but also in the way they are extracted, taste and colour. The honey flow, i.e. the source of nectar and honeydew, of a bee year has a significant influence on the character of a honey. Thus, no honey harvest is like another.
Distinction between blossom honey and forest honey
Blossom honey is made from the nectar of blossoms, a sugary juice from plants. Bees and other insects are attracted to the sweet scent of the sugary liquid once it has collected in the nectar calyx.
Forest honey, on the other hand, is obtained from honeydew, which is formed, for example, by aphids and scale insects. The insects feed on the sap of various plants and excrete the excess liquid in the form of honeydew. A sticky film remains on the leaves, needles and twigs, which the bees absorb and process into honey in the hive. Honeydew honey includes fir honey and honeydew honey. In contrast to blossom honey, honeydew honey is rather dark in color and has a spicy, tart taste.