FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How do I submit a sample?

Purchase your pollen profile here on our website. Upon ordering the analysis, you will receive an email containing the shipping address and instructions. Please send at least ¼ cup of honey, and we will provide your results within 4 weeks of receiving your sample. Please be aware that we utilize a mail service with a processing time of up to 48 hours before delivering packages to our mailbox.

 

2. How is your analysis done?

We dilute the honey and use a chemical solution called acetolysis to remove the nuclear material and wax from the pollen. We then stain the pollen pink to enhance the structures. Using a microscope we count 200 pollen grains from your sample and identify them based on our identifiable pollen list.

 

3. Why do you use a list of identifiable pollen?

There are over 350,000 pollen-producing plant species globally. By utilizing a list of commonly used bee pollen types with available reference material, we significantly reduce turnaround time and enhance accuracy.

 

4. What if you find pollen in my sample that’s not on the identifiable pollen list?

If we encounter unknown pollen in your sample, we will attempt to locate external references for identification. However, most unlisted pollen grains will be labeled as “unknown” in your report. If you have specific plant types of interest not on the list, inform us during the checkout, and we will do our best to identify them.

 

5. Can you tell me the proportion of nectar from different plants in my honey based on the pollen assemblage?

We do not generally provide the estimated nectar source based on pollen coefficients. This is because every pollen type in the sample needs to have a coefficient value to determine nectar contribution. With over 350,000 flowering plants globally, we very rarely encounter a honey sample where each pollen type has a pollen coefficient value. Therefore, most nectar estimations involve too much guesswork for us to adopt it as standard practice. We are, however, happy to provide our opinion or chat about which pollen types in your sample may be underrepresented.

 

6. Do you accept honey samples from anywhere in the world?

Yes, but note that our identifiable list is primarily focused on North American honey pollen types.

 

7. How long do your analyses take?

Our average turnaround time is 14 days, but results may take up to 28 days. Please understand that your turnaround time begins after we receive your sample and is not calculated from the date you order. For expedited analysis, email info@mellifloral.com; we may complete it in 1-2 weeks with additional charges.

 

8. How should I sample my honey?

Sieve honey minimally to retain maximum pollen. Any sieving removes some pollen, but you may remove wax and other debris using a ~500-micron screen. If your honey has already been sieved and you are concerned about your analysis, email info@mellifloral.com.

Be mindful of contamination. Pollen is everywhere! Immediately bottle honey for analysis during extraction to prevent airborne pollen contamination. Ensure your extraction and sampling equipment is clean to avoid contamination.

Stir your honey before sampling. Pollen can settle to the bottom of a container. When collecting from a large container like a bucket, stir before sampling to avoid collecting from the top layer, which may have lower pollen content.

 

I still have questions. How can I contact you?

Contact us by filling out the form or emailing info@mellifloral.com. Please allow 2 business days to receive a reply.