Safety of honey from a dead or deserted hive

Asked February 15, 2018, 11:06 PM EST

In December 2017 the bees in my one hive either died or absconded. There was no signs of disease or mold or odors, and only a few dead bees around the hive. (I did not treat the hive for mites.) The bees left behind several frames of honey, which I put in my freezer for a couple of months and just recently harvested and put into canning jars. Is honey from a dead hive safe to eat?

Washington County Oregon

1 Response

Generally honey (in capped frames) left in a dead honey bee colony is safe for consumption if it has not fermented or has not bee been subjected to high temperatures (100 F or higher). In your case it appears that your colony died due to varroa mite infestation and you froze the honey frames, so the honey should be safe for consumption.

Thank you.