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We recently had to get a swarm of bees removed from our house and moved to an appropriate lodging. We have been left with about 2kg of honeycomb - some of it clean, some of it with old honey/larvae/debris in it.

How do you extract the honey with the following restrictions:

  • No heating, the honey must remain raw
  • All items need to be common household items
  • End product needs to be filtered and clean of any debris or bee leftovers
  • I've never done this myself but my understanding is that you just put the honey though a wire mesh strainer to remove particulates. – GdD Jul 2 '15 at 9:26
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    Depending where you live, you will need to have the honey tested for plant toxins before you consume it. The least of your worries is heating the honey! – TFD Jul 2 '15 at 11:56
  • @TFD no problems with plant toxins where we are, thanks :D – walbuc Jul 2 '15 at 13:44
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    I've seen how this done on the farm - they cut the caps(about 3mm top of honeycomb with long knife), then put it to the centrifuge and voila. You can try slower way just to cut and leave it at warm place to flow upside down, I think gravity will defeat surface tension :) try on a smaller piece first – Eugene Petrov Jul 2 '15 at 14:55
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    Technically, you don't have to extract it. Just chew the honeycomb. – rumtscho Jul 2 '15 at 15:27
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Ok so this is what I did, and it worked :)

  1. Gently cut/scrape the outer caps with knife
  2. Mashed the comb with a fork and moved it into a fine sieve, placed over a bowl
  3. Put it in the oven on a very low heat <35 degrees Celsius for 30 min

This happened over 2 days, I would gently warm it, then mash it a little and move it around so that it kept seeping out. It's not 100% efficient but I would say I probably got 90% yield.

My dogs were very happy to take the leftover mash as "treats"! (as an side note, it's really really good for them).

Thank you @GdH and @EugenePetrov for the input!

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