Physical characteristics of Honey
Colour: As per Pfund Grader:
|Water White: |
Extra Light Amber:
|0 - 9mm |
9 - 19mm
20 - 34mm
45 - 50mm
51 - 85mm
86 - 114mm
Specific Gravity: Dependent on Water content:
15.0% moisture @ 20°C 1.423 approx.
18.0% moisture @ 20°C 1.417 approx.
*** Floral source can also affect Specific Gravity
Temperature and moisture content are the main determinants of viscosity. Viscosity of Honey decreases rapidly as the temperature rises. A change of 1% moisture is equivalent to about 3.5°C in its effect on viscosity. Nectar source will also have an impact on viscosity. In most cases this is minor but in the case of thixotropic honeys (for example manuka), this may be greater.
Some typical values for clover honey
At 16% moisture
|At 25°C |
Honey will reach an equilibrium of moisture content depending on the relative humidity, and will generally speaking absorb moisture from the air until that equilibrium is reached. This may make the honey more susceptible to fermentation.
The two major sugars in honey (glucose and fructose) are the main factor in determining the tendency for a honey to crystallise. Water content also plays a part. Generally the higher the glucose, the faster honey crystallises and the higher the fructose, the slower it crystallises.
Three formulas have been proposed for prediction of crystallisation tendency.
|1. Glucose / Water. |
2. Fructose / Glucose
3. (Glucose-Water) / Fructose
|<> 1.64 stays liquid |
| > 2.1 will crystallise |
> 0.42 will crystallise
Liquid Honey: 0.54 - 0.60 (higher moisture content = higher SH value) Creamed Honey: up to 0.73
from 118 X 10-5 to 143 X 10-5 cal/cm sec°C
Isoelectric point: 4.30
15% solution from -1.43 to -1.53° C
68% solution -12.01°C
0.5 - 0.6 AW