Local: The pollen is harvested from hives located on or near High Ground Organics Lewis Rd Farm in Corn Cob Canyon of North Monterey County. Though the hives may be located on an organic farm the bees travel far and wide so little of the pollen is actually from the orgainc farm.
Fresh: The pollen is harvested daily.
Raw: Once harvested the pollen is immediately frozen. This pollen is not dried and should be refrigerated or frozen to prevent it from molding.
Honeybees collect pollen by rubbing their body on the stamens (male part) of flowers. Pollen is trapped in the hairs on the bees’ bodies. The bees then comb the pollen from their body hairs, add a little honey or nectar to the pollen to help it stick together, and pack it into the pollen baskets on their back legs. Beekeepers can collect bee pollen by installing specially sized wire screen over the hive entrance that is just large enough for the bees to fit through. As the bees pass through the openings of the wire screen, some of the pollen pellets are knocked off of the bees and fall into a box designed to collect the pollen. The freshly collected pollen is moist and is very susceptible to molding so it should harvested as soon as possible. Once collected it must be frozen, refrigerated or dried to prevent it from spoiling. I believe that the best tasting pollen is fresh, moist pollen that has not been dried. Therefore I harvest the pollen daily as much as possible and never less frequently then every other day. The harvested pollen is immediately frozen. Once the pollen is hard frozen it is cleaned by dropping it through moving air in much the same manner as grain is winnowed from chaff. The lighter material is blown away and the heavier pollen pellets drop down into a basket or bowl. The cleaned pollen is then bottled and placed back in the freezer before it has a chance to thaw. Any pollen that you buy that is not stored in the freezer or refrigerator has been dried. Dried pollen has a reduced moisture content so that it will not mold. Drying also causes some other subtle changes in the pollen that are objectionable, though it looks the same it is not fresh pollen. Much of the pollen sold on the general market today is imported from China or Spain. I strongly recommend that you check the source of any pollen you purchase and at least purchase it from a US producer and preferably from a local produce. I can assure you that fresh pollen is the best tasting pollen you will ever eat, but it does require you to treat it as a perishable food. Dried pollen has a much better shelf life and is easily shipped, but is inferior.