Many people, including Martin and I, like to limit purchase of food in plastic packaging. People do this for various reasons but mainly for environmental or health motivations. One way of limiting plastic is to purchase food in glass jars instead of plastic. When we were deciding how to package our honey it had to be glass. It is so much more healthier, attractive and environmental friendly.
But have you thought about how honey is stored before it goes into the jar? In the beehive honey used to always be stored on beeswax comb foundation which was wired into a wooden frame. But what is most commonly used now is plastic frames with plastic sheets embossed with hexagon indentations for the bees to work with as a foundation. The other common one is a wooden framing with a plastic insert foundation.
Here's some photos of what they look like, the first one is an all plastic frame and the second one is a natural wood honey frame .
The thing that concerns us about these is the possibility of plastic residue getting into the honey, the bees health working from a plastic foundation, let alone the environmental issue of what to do with the plastic frames and foundations when they are broken or past there best. We was concerned to see all these plastic beehives (the whole hive in plastic) for sale at a beekeeping conference we recently attended. That's a lot of plastic! What will happen to them when they are finished with?Sweetree's policy is to use wooden hive gear and frames with beeswax foundations for our honey collection.