The World Around Us

Chemicals in Our World

How do bees make honey?

The first step is searching out a flower to pick up some nectar. Nectar is a mixture of sugar and water. Specifically, the sugar in nectar used to make honey is sucrose, a dis-accharide (see “Biochemistry”). A honeybee produces enzymes in its body that can break down the sucrose into monosaccharides, fructose, and glucose as well as gluconic acid. These sugars are the primary constituents of honey. Most of the water evaporates, which is what makes honey so viscous and sticky.


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