The challenge was there from the time humans first ventured out to hunt and gather their food: how do you preserve what you do not eat immediately?
Left unattended, food goes bad over time. Over the centuries, people turned to a wide variety of substances to help slow the process, from plant leaves to salt. But the whole time, an old friend produced what turns out to be the perfect food protection product.
Our Canadian-based company, Tru Earth now leads the way in the preservation and storage of food so that it stays fresh and healthy longer.
The simple honeybee, who’s ancestors stretch back 130 million years, gives us the simplest solution to our food-preservation challenge.
The process is simple: bees fly from plant to plant to collect pollen. They use the pollen to make honey and beeswax. They use the honey to feed their children and the beeswax to protect the honey.
And therein lies the answer: use beeswax to protect food for our families.
But the story behind the story of the humble honey bee and the why’s and how’s of their creation and use of beeswax is a story seldom told.
14 Fascinating Facts about Beeswax
Honeybees produce beeswax to construct cells in which they raise their brood and store honey and pollen. They used it for a variety of applications for thousands of years. You are familiar with the image of a honeycomb, but it is time to think about how complex and fascinating beeswax really is.
Beeswax plays a very important role in the honeybee colony, but it’s also been used by humans for thousands of years, in many different applications.
Here are 14 beeswax facts to help you gain a new appreciation and respect for honeybees and their beeswax.
- Young worker bees (between 12 and 20 days old) are the main producers of beeswax. They have 8 wax producing glands on their abdomen. Those glands secrete wax in thin sheets called scales. It takes about 1,100 scales to make one gram of wax.
- To produce 1 pound of beeswax, bees must consume 6 – 8 pounds of honey. Considering how much work goes into making honey, that makes beeswax a very valuable product.
- Beeswax starts off as clear and colorless, but becomes opaque after chewing and the addition of pollen, honey, and propolis.
- Bees reuse the old comb by chewing it off and placing it elsewhere. So, honeybees are a great example – one we should all appreciate – of recycling at its best.
- Most commercial wax is made from cappings. Cappings are the new, thin layer of wax that bees place over their completed honey. Beekeepers must remove the cappings in order to harvest honey.
- There are three main types of beeswax – yellow, white, and beeswax absolute. Yellow beeswax is raw beeswax. White beeswax is yellow beeswax that has been bleached lighter. Beeswax absolute is yellow beeswax that has been treated with alcohol.
- Honeycomb, the hexagonal cells constructed from beeswax, is edible. The raw honey contained in honeycomb is rich in enzymes and antioxidants. Beeswax contains long-chain fatty acids and alcohols which may boost heart health.
- Beeswax is often used in skincare products because it provides the skin protection, while remaining breathable. Irritated skin can benefit from beeswax as it is anti-inflammatory and antibacterial.
- Ancient Egyptians had many uses for beeswax. They used it in the mummification process and to seal coffins. Ancient writings were also preserved on papyrus and on cave walls using beeswax.
- As far back as 2,000 years ago, the Chinese used beeswax medicinally and for wound treatment. The Shennong Book of Herbs, a famous Chinese medicinal book praises beeswax for its many health and beauty benefits.
- Beeswax is a natural cover for cheese. It works well because of its low melting point.
- Old furniture, sliding doors, and stuck windows and drawers could all benefit from beeswax, as it is an effective wood lubricant.
- Beeswax crayons are great for young children because they are natural, non-toxic, and more durable than regular crayons.
- The first cosmetic cream was created in 150 B.C., by Greek physician Galen of Pergamon. It was made of beeswax, olive oil, and water.
- Here at Tru Earth we create beeswax wraps and beeswax snack bags for today’s eco-conscious consumers. These products help preserve the freshness and quality of food, such as cheese, and leftovers like sandwiches and fruit and vegetables. The snack bags do an excellent job protecting a wide assortment of snacks for field trips, work breaks, or even just sitting at home while you relax. Because these are all-natural products, they are also environmentally friendly, and that makes them a favourite with anyone concerned about the future health of our planet Earth.
The beeswax wraps you find here at Tru Earth are perfect for storing fruits, vegetables, cheese, bread and more. They offer a lightweight, flexible design and make an excellent solution for easy food storage at home or on the go. They are also a great way to reduce the cost – to your budget and the environment – of single-use plastic products.
Beeswax wraps are made with cotton fabric, beeswax, tree resin and jojoba oil, all natural and non-toxic ingredients. They are sturdy and reusable. The wraps are 100% biodegradable and are safe for the environment.
So, when you face the decision of how to protect your food, protect your family’s health, and protect your planet, you should consider the Tru Earth Beeswax Wrap you find when you click on this link as your “go to solution.”