Propolis....

Discussion in 'Products of the Hive' started by BjornBee, Aug 22, 2009.

  1. BjornBee

    BjornBee New Member

    Messages:
    1,696
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    is pound for pound more expensive than honey.

    I just finished up selling my several pounds I collect every year. Some went to a university in England, some to some testing facility is Singapore, and bunch to Germany. Seems others are looking for product testing and development. I sold some on Ebay also. This year, I charged $40 per pound, sold in 10 dollar bags of 1/4 pound each. Sold out fast.

    May be looking to produce some more next year.

    Something to consider..... ;)
     
  2. indypartridge

    indypartridge New Member

    Messages:
    349
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Do you use the plastic propolis 'collectors' that you put in the freezer? Or just scrapings? I've got a tub full of scrapings, but how do you clean it? Mine has bee parts, an occasional wood sliver and who knows what else.
     

  3. BjornBee

    BjornBee New Member

    Messages:
    1,696
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Indy,
    I don't use the traps. I just break off or take what I can without really scraping the edges. This way it's pretty clean from the start with no paint chips, etc. I have a can in the truck and anytime I'm in a hive that has pieces worth messing with, I add to the jar. Over time, it really starts to add up. I will sit with a pile on a cookie sheet and pick out most garbage with a treezer while killing time watching a game or the news.

    With the traps, you get very nice reddish crystal looking propolis that all looks the same. Nothing wrong with that.

    I get a wide variety of shades and some is soft and some rock hard, depending the source of the propolis. This year, I got some that must of been from some sort of pine tree cause it smelled just like pine needles.
     
  4. sqkcrk

    sqkcrk New Member

    Messages:
    840
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I have a friend who sells propolis to Beehive Botanicals. He finds it worth while to scrape every bit he finds from supers or frames. Makes for nice equipment too.
     
  5. BjornBee

    BjornBee New Member

    Messages:
    1,696
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Just remember though, there is a tiered pay grade scale based on quality and junk in the propolis. They take scrapings, but pay far less.
     
  6. Fuzzystuff

    Fuzzystuff New Member

    Messages:
    201
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Outside of twezzing the junk what else do you do with it to use it? Do you dry it out, press it down, I'm at a lost?
     
  7. riverrat

    riverrat New Member

    Messages:
    2,683
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0

    Propolis is a anti bacterial they mix it with alcohol to make salves and tentures. Use to help in the healing of wounds. I have several propolis traps have used them one year. Takes a lot of propolis to make a pound
     
  8. sqkcrk

    sqkcrk New Member

    Messages:
    840
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    From what I have heard and never done myself, cleaning is done by throwing the stuff in water. The propolis drops to the bottom, I think, and the rest floats.

    I don't know about drying it out. But I can imagine spreading it out on screens and letting it air dry. Again, never done it.

    Any ideas Bjornbee?
     
  9. Monie

    Monie New Member

    Messages:
    155
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I've tried heating it up in the microwave, and picking pieces of debris out with a toothpick. It was soso. The problem is that the wax separates from the resins, and that was a pain to try to work back in. It would be best to harvest clean propolis from the get go. It'll save time and a headaches.
     
  10. blueblood

    blueblood New Member

    Messages:
    2,056
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I detailed my hives today because this will probably bee the last day of 70's weather we will have for a while. I scraped and collected excess propolis to save for this winter's medicinal purposes.

    Other than storing the propolis just as it is in a sealed container and keeping in a cool place, is there any other storage ideas that others have? Specifically in a form that would be ready to digest.

    1. ethyl-alcohol or in oil-solution (what oil and what ratios?)
    2. dissolve in it's natural state (distilled water and if so, ration?)
    3. freeze it?
     
  11. Clover Queen Bee

    Clover Queen Bee New Member

    Messages:
    33
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Hi there... I collect the propolis off of the frames and boxes with the hive tool by scraping it. At first it was just to clean the hives to make them more manageable and less sticky, and inicially I threw it away, but it seemed such a waste of a valuable resource, that I then began collecting it. I roll it into little balls and put it into little plastic bags... I then decided to make some tincture, but could not find any clear advice on how to do it. Evetually I found something about using the plastic sheet and then putting it in the freezer to make it easier to crack into small pieces, but as I don´t have a fridge or freezer at the moment, I just split the propolis into small pieces, rolled them into tiny thin micro cylinders, and broke off little pieces that I put into a jar and then filled with vodka. Every other day for 3 weeks I gave it a little shake, and then I poured it our through a couple layers of cheesecloth (because thats what I had) and into a new jar. The end result was a cloudy liquid. I have taken it when I had a cold, mixing it with cold water. It works fine, and you can taste the propolis. The process is quite messy as most things are with bees, very sticky... but I would like to make other products with the propolis.. edible sweets and body balms... if anyone has any recipes, please share... thanks!
     
  12. blueblood

    blueblood New Member

    Messages:
    2,056
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Thanks for the tip on how you processed it Clover....
     
  13. blueblood

    blueblood New Member

    Messages:
    2,056
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Anyone else have any input on processing and/or storage of propolis? What is the shelf life of propolis? Any wound salve recipes using propolis out there?
     
  14. Ray

    Ray Member

    Messages:
    582
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    I am wondering does the propolis screen / trap, reduce the amount of propolis in the hive?
     
  15. ApisBees

    ApisBees Active Member

    Messages:
    2,060
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    No it encourages them to bring in more to seal off all those holes.
     
  16. BhaktiBee

    BhaktiBee New Member

    Messages:
    17
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I was cruising the threads for advice on gathering and processing this gooey gold. I'm going to get me some propolis trapped POSTHASTE.

    I would advise caution in the ingestion of it though. Bees are an opportunistic tribe and will collect tars from whatever is around, including man-made sealants and caulks ​(Or so says Wikipedia) And we all know how much care goes into the the stuff WE (tribe of modern humans) manufacture.

    Another great use for propolis is in varnish or lacquer for making instruments like guitars and violins. I know a few luthiers up here in the middle of nowhere that want to try using it. It was apparently one of the secret ingredients in making a Stradivarius.
     
  17. PerryBee

    PerryBee New Member

    Messages:
    5,829
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    There you go, I just had to look that up to see what the heck it was. Thanks, I learned something else today! :grin: