Honey forensics – pollen in honey from St Petersburg 

Today, I had a really fun tea session with the principle and teachers at school number 30, in the heart of St. Petersburg. We ran a foldscope workshop for students from several schools in the area (documentation coming soon). 

While drinking my tea with honey, I decided to look at the honey under a foldscope. 

Now; I was reallly intrigued by two things: 

1) the long pencil like crystals; usually I see sugar crystals to have the same aspect ratio – but not clearlybthe case here. Also, is honey supposed to have micro-crystals if it’s pure? 

2) secondly, I was able to find two kind of pollen grains. This gets me very excited; because it might be possible to find where the honey was collected by the bee itself. 

Just so you are wondering, this is the brand of honey that was served. The waiter was kind to bring me the whole box. I can’t read Russian; but maybe you can help me identify this brand. 

Offcourse, the waiter enjoyed the spectacle and watching honey for the first time. He was so happy!! Clearly not expecting a microscopy lesson on the table. 

I am now on the quest to find which flower this honey might be from. On the bottle, it is claimed that the flower is this one: 

Keep exploring.  



One Comment Add yours

  1. Saad Bhamla says:

    This is super cool – the rectangular crystals!! Now that I know, it makes sense that honey would have sugar crystals, but I am astounded that they are all so similar – some stage during the processing created these crystals. Wondering if other honey would have these exact same crystal shape? Perhaps the crystals clue us on the processing that the honey has gone through? or maybe they exist in raw honey as well directly from a hive..

    Beautiful post from Russia!!


Leave a Reply