One worker bee produces 1/12 of a teaspoon (0.4 mL) on average in its entire lifespan. Honey is produced when bees collect flower nectar and store it in honeycombs. The design of the honeycombs allows for air flow from outdoors and the beating of the bees wings. This lets the nectar liquid evaporate while the sugars break down, resulting in sticky honey. During a trip to collect nectar from flowers, a bee will visit from 50 to 100 flowers. Collectively, honey bees must extract nectar from around two million flowers and travel over 55,000 miles (88,513 km) to produce one pound (0.45 kg) of honey.
More about honey:
- The average American consumes 1.3 pounds (0.67 kg) of honey every year, according to assessments from the National Honey Board.
- Worker bees are estimated to have been producing honey as far back as 20 million years ago.
- Pollination, in which male parts of flowers are transferred to female parts in order to fertilize and grow a plant, is a major role of honey bees. It’s estimated the insects are responsible for one-third of the food crops humans eat.