My first honey judging today

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Papakeith, Nov 11, 2012.

  1. Papakeith

    Papakeith New Member

    Messages:
    509
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Anyone got any pointers?

    The association requires unlabeled 1 lb bottles. Apart from filling the jar is there any other thing that will get me better scores from the judges?
     
  2. Lburou

    Lburou Member

    Messages:
    553
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    Less is more. :)
     

  3. PerryBee

    PerryBee New Member

    Messages:
    5,829
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Pictures! :mrgreen:
     
  4. Papakeith

    Papakeith New Member

    Messages:
    509
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    if only I had a thong with a proper logo for the occasion:lol:
     
  5. riverrat

    riverrat New Member

    Messages:
    2,683
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
  6. ApisBees

    ApisBees Active Member

    Messages:
    2,060
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    1st it is a show of showman ship. not the best tasting honey cause that is a personal preference thing.
    Different shows or judges may prioritize different aspects of honey. how many jars are needed to enter a class. Here in Canada 6 jars are required. We judge on....
    NATIONAL SCALE OF POINTS FOR JUDGING
    LIQUID HONEY POINTS
    1. Appearance and uniformity of containers 5 ---- all jars the same, no defects in the jars, no finger prints on jar and lids, no honey on bottom of the lid (take clean lids and change them at the event so there is no honey on them), no dents or rust on lids, lids all the same.

    2. Uniform level of fill 5 - - - - the honey level in the jar should be high enough so you can't see air between the top of the honey and the bottom of the lid. the level of fill in all samples should be the same make a depth gauge with a paperclip on a Popsicle stick to check each.

    3. Colour 5 - - - - the color of the honey has to match the color class the honey is entered in. all jars should be the same color honey' jars pulled at random from prepacked could have different colors

    4. Freedom from crystals 15 - - - - when small hard to see but the judge uses a polarizing light box to look at the honey thru and they are visible warm honey to dissolve crystals.

    5. Freedom from foreign material 15 ---- the judge uses a polarizing light box to look at the honey thru, Lint off the straining cloth or towel used to dry the inside of the jar are visible

    6. Freedom from air bubbles either in suspension or as froth 15 ---- try to avoid air by letting the honey sir in the bottling tank warmed for a couple of days before poring run the honey down a knife or pour the honey down the side of the glass Don't let the honey free fall and lap back over on it's self cause a bubble is formed every time it does.

    7. Uniformity of honey 5 ---- see item 3 even honey from different frames in out of the same hive can be different the judge can confirm his hunches by color appearance more crystals and by checking the density

    8. Brightness 10 ---- the difference in appearance when light is placed behind clear and sparkles or dull and pastel the light is refracting of all the crystals air bubbles and foreign material in the honey

    9. Flavor and aroma 10 - - - - there should be no chemical taste or smell the honey if light in color should be mild in flavor, what the customer expects, sweet, flavorful, if it has an unpleasant taste or leaves a bad taste once the sweetness is gone it could be marked down other wise full points.

    10. Density 15 ---- moister content of the honey if the moister content is below the grade for honey full points if not the honey could start fermenting on the customer.

    Total 100
     
  7. G3farms

    G3farms New Member

    Messages:
    5,162
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Bang on!! I wish our judging had the six jar minimum.
     
  8. ApisBees

    ApisBees Active Member

    Messages:
    2,060
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    G3 how many jars do you have to submit? The honey comity chair person at the fair can set there own number here 6 are the standard at fairs, but at the bee convention only 3 are required.
    Should of added this in the last post. For the different classes no labels should be on your entries so the product isn't hidden, the judging can be impartial so the judge doesn't know whose honey is being judged until after all honey has been judged. some times this is hard with frames when you brand the top bars with your name, the only exception is if there are commercial displays, read the fair guide to see what is required for the class and thy to fulfill as many of the requirements as possible.
     
  9. G3farms

    G3farms New Member

    Messages:
    5,162
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    In our local fairs we only need one jar to enter. To me this does not really give a good over all look at what a producer can do. Yes yes I know that there will some to complain that they did not have enough honey to be able to bring in six jars, but then I guess it could be divided up into two separate categories and you could only enter into either one or the other. All entrants are given a tag to fill out and is rubber banded to the jar for ID., it is folded in half with sticky on one edge to conceal the name.
     
  10. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

    Messages:
    6,487
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    you know Apis is seems odd to me that flavor and aroma should be in the ninth slot and not the #1 slot? or why not have these as two different things with aroma (or lack of aroma) being a different category.
     
  11. ApisBees

    ApisBees Active Member

    Messages:
    2,060
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Flavor and aroma is a personal taste preference there is seldom a wrong answer in this category, most samples of honey gets a full 10 points. It is not my place as a judge to tell some one that light mild tasting honey is better than darker more flavorful honey. So what we judge these points on is what we taste that should not be there. Chemical, gas or diesel smells. If dark honey is entered and you expect it to be buckwheat honey and it has a strong flavor and aroma consistent of buckwheat even tho there are a lot of people how don't care for it, it would receive full points. Here in the Okanagan we have knapweed that produces a light colored honey that has a pleasant aroma but when tasted it first tastes sweet and mild in flavor but once the sugars have gone your left with a bitter aftertaste in your mouth. We don't get enough golden rod honey to ever extract here but I imagine It could be marked down in the flavor and aroma line also.
     
  12. riverrat

    riverrat New Member

    Messages:
    2,683
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Papa any update on how you did in the contest:thumbsup:
     
  13. Papakeith

    Papakeith New Member

    Messages:
    509
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Great scores for everything but moisture content. max allowable was 18.6 Mine tested out at 19. Not sure why, It was all capped. Maybe leaving it for a day or two outside the hive on a humid day did it? I dunno.

    I suppose I'll be investing in a refractometer before long.

    About half of the entries were bounced from the competition for moisture content above the allowed limit.
     
  14. ApisBees

    ApisBees Active Member

    Messages:
    2,060
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Do you know of any one with a refractometer? who could check and verify the results that they got? 1/2 kicked from the competition seems high, the girls generally don't get the moisture content wrong. In all the time I have judged I have only seen 1 sample in any year about every 3 years that the honey is above the moisture content, and up here in Canada the #1 Grade for non pasteurized honey is 17%. maybe their refractometer was out of calibration. Dose your honey appear thicker of thinner than bulk processed sold in the stores? the large packers generally keep the moisture content near the limit
     
  15. Papakeith

    Papakeith New Member

    Messages:
    509
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I'm sure I could find someone. This was at our beekeeper meeting maybe 15 entries. They used a digital meter. Can those be that out of whack?

    I don't know if it is thicker or thinner than bulk. I could check I suppose.

    I'll be getting one of my own regardless. I'm just wrestling with manual inexpensive or digital for all of the $$
     
  16. ApisBees

    ApisBees Active Member

    Messages:
    2,060
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    The manual one uses light waves and the reflective index of light. They are simple to use and have an temperature corrective scale.
    did the person judging the honey dry off all parts of the refractometer after cleaning the last sample off? If there was any moisture left it would effect the next sample.
    Keith go for coffee and toast and pick up a honey individual pack and take it home and place it on the jar of honey for a few hours once they are the same temp do a drop test and compare the two. To do a drop test insert a tooth pick in the honey about 3/4 inch pull the tooth pick out and let the honey break stream and let the next drop land on the counter, repeat for the next sample wait a minute and you will see that the thinner one will spread out more. dose not tell you the moisture content but is a good comparison between samples. Especially if you know the moisture of one sample is ok.
     
  17. Barbarian

    Barbarian New Member

    Messages:
    728
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Tips and Wrinkles

    I am a bit concerned about this thread.

    Entering honey at shows and fairs can be a very competitive sub-culture of beekeeping. I wouldn't be surprised if the winner had shown under the judge previously and knew what the judge looked for. The winner would have ensured that the moisture level in his entry was to the judge's standard.

    I don't show honey but have been given various tips and wrinkles about showing. Most of these were given in a semi-private setting. I do not feel it fair to the 'experts' to post these on the forum.

    Posts on the forum are available to thousands of people.

    Am I being mean ?
     
  18. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

    Messages:
    8,996
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Are you being mean?? Of course not. No more than tying two cat's tails together and hanging them over a clothes line. :eek:
     
  19. Papakeith

    Papakeith New Member

    Messages:
    509
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    This was nothing that serious or nefarious. This judging was done at or monthly beekeeper meeting. The judges were chosen from the crowd, but were senior members. They too found it odd that so many entries came in above the limit. so much so that they retested all of the entries.
    I'll get some store honey and try a drop test.I'll get myself a meter.I'm not going to lose sleep over it:D

    Sent from my DROID BIONIC using Tapatalk 2
     
  20. ApisBees

    ApisBees Active Member

    Messages:
    2,060
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    It is an excellent way to get the public to notice honey most of the beekeepers I know who exhibit year after year do so not for the being the winner but to support the showing off of honey and hive products. people passing the tables at the fair are drawn to the beauty and divers range of hive products. in our fair we also have the cooking with honey, jams and jelly, and the canning with honey classes in with the honey display. The comments you here from people that they didn't know honey could be used in cooking and caning or kids seeing honey displayed and asking there parents why they don't have any at home and the parent promising to buy some.
    the moisture content is not set by the judge but government food inspection agency. and it is set to a value that is low so the honey is a stable saturated sugar solution so it dose not ferment. Untill the moisture content is below that threshold technically it is not honey but unripened nectar.