When the bees start carrying the pollen into the hive, the pollen traps are place in front of the entrance. The bees must pass through the gaps at the grid from the trap and the little pollen grains fall into the gathering box below.
To make sure the bees have enough pollen for themselves, at Toca, we collect the pollen for a day and we then open the pollen traps to allow for the bees to carry their pollen freely into the hive. This operation is regularly repeated during the pollen harvest time. By doing so, we are sure we work in an ethical way with our bees and that they never suffer a lack of bee pollen inside the hive.
Every day the pollen is collected at the apiaries and carried back to the Toca central warehouse. To prevent spoilage and for preservation of a maximum quality, bee pollen has to be placed immediately in a freezer.
After this, the drying process takes place. At Toca, we dry the pollen always below 35 degrees so that it preserves all of its raw nutrients.
When the drying process is finished, the pollen must pass a final sieving control to make sure no larger particles other than pollen remain in the batch.
Finally, the pollen is manually bottled into jars which are always vacuumed packed. We do this to ensure the freshness of the harvesting. It´s important to highlight the unique treatments applied to the pollen to assure its preservation are the freezing period, non-aggressive drying process and finally the vacuumed packing.
One of the main varieties we are able to harvest at our farm is chestnut bee pollen.
During the investigation period to develop the harvesting methods we currently use at Toca, we have done several studies regarding the properties that different types of pollen have. One of the most interesting reports showed the amount of antioxidants in the chestnut bee pollen to be the highest among other types of bee pollen.
To discover more about Toca bee pollen, enter the #lovetoca competition and visit our farm in Galicia
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