When bees collect pollen and nectar from flowers and bring it back to the hive – some of it is converted into honey but the rest is converted into beeswax. Bees build their combs from beeswax so they need it in order to survive.
Once you see white cappings in the hive covering the hexagonal shaped cells, it means that the honey is ready for extraction. It is the cappings which are situated on both sides of the cells that make up the beeswax.
The cappings are removed from both sides of the cells and set aside to max wax blocks and the honey is then readily extracted from the cells.
Bees wax is great for making many things, including:
Combs may be rendered into wax blocks – newer combs produce the best quality wax. Older combs contain propolis and also waste residue such as old cocoons – this makes it a less desirable wax.
Interesting fact: Bees’ wax has a high melting point when compared to other types of wax 64 degrees C.
Most methods of rendering wax use hot water to melt it. They are based on the fact that beeswax floats in water. A few words of caution are in order, however:
An extract from a forthcoming short course being developed by our staff -Watch out for it on this site in September/October 2016
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