The Difference Between Raw Honey & Processed Honey

Honey is one of the most nutritious fluids produced naturally on earth. It’s that thick, sweet golden syrup made by honey bees. It has links to many health benefits but there is some controversy surrounding this sticky, liquid gold.

Which type of honey, raw or processed is healthiest?

If you have walked through your local grocery store lately, you will have seen a lot of brands and varieties out there on the market.

So here comes the big question — what is the difference between raw and processed honey?

Before diving into the difference between raw honey and processed honey, here is what you need to know.

Raw Honey

Raw honey is made by extracting honey from the honeycombs within the hive. It is then poured over a mesh cloth to separate the honey from impurities such as beeswax and dead bees. That is, it, the honey is ready to be enjoyed just like that. Zero processing.

Raw honey contains up to 250 substances, including essential fatty acids, vitamins, amino acids, antioxidants, and micronutrients.

Interestingly, it also contains bee pollen, which is of great benefit to the human body. Bee pollen is known for reducing inflammation.

Raw honey is also known to have important amino acids like essential and nonessential amino acids. It also contains major minerals like phosphorus, calcium, and potassium. Some of these minerals are linked to health benefits like reduced risk of heart disease, reduced inflammation, and lower risk of cancer.

Processed Honey

The production of processed or regular honey involves a few more steps than its raw counterpart including pasteurization.

Pasteurization destroys the yeast found in honey by heat. Doing this extends the shelf life of honey and makes it smoother.

Some commercial honeys have additional filtration to completely change its appearance but by doing this removes all those beneficial nutrients mentioned above like pollen, enzymes and antioxidants.

The colour difference

Typically, raw honey is cloudier than processed honey.


Because the debris found in raw honey plays a huge role in its coloration. This debris is not easy to filter out. It mixes with the honey and becomes one with it.

There are colour variation and texture changes in raw honey. The variations are due to the kind of flowers the bees pollinate. Processed honey is more refined — it is hard to encounter such issues in processed honey.

The process

Pasteurisation and filtration are used to make the honey look cleaner and more attractive on the shelf. This process also reduces the honey viscosity due to the honey being warmer, making it easier to handle and package.

Pasteurising is the heating of honey to a high temperature. This process destroys the natural properties and eliminates many of the phytonutrients of raw honey.  Heating honey in this manner not only kills rich nutrients, but it also reduces the flavour and original heavenly scent of genuine honey.

Real raw honey retains the good stuff

Raw or real honey retains the natural ingredients of honey (pollen, wax, propolis and royal jelly) and thus providing nature’s true benefits of 100% real nutritious honey.

If you are looking to buy raw honey online, we encourage you to only buy natural honey products produced and supplied by beekeepers across Australia.

The products available for sale Simply Honey online honey store are sourced from AB’s Honey, renowned beekeepers, and packers of exclusively Australian, exceptional quality raw, real and natural Australian honey.


Photo by Bermix Studio on Unsplash

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