High on Honey

Not only has  honey been prized for generations for its sweetness, resistance to spoiling, and natural antibiotic properties, but now you can also get a “buzz” from it!

Apparently a French beekeeper has trained his bees to collect pollen and resin from cannabis plants to make what he calls “cannahoney.” It supposedly has a very good flavor and is very mild in its mind-altering effects. The bees use the resin for propolis, which bees use to seal openings in their beehives, and use the pollen and nectar from the plant flowers to make their honey.


Bees apparently collecting from a marijuana plant. Photo source

For an interesting little article on Nicolas, you can GO HERE. Warning – this is a pro-weed website, so you have to certify that you’re an adult.

Now, for other sources of hallucinogenic honey (yes, there are more), we must head to Turkey or areas of Nepal. This “mad honey” contains grayanotoxin, found in the nectar of certain kinds of rhododendron flowers. Grayanotoxin is a neurotoxin that can cause light-headedness, and sometimes hallucinations. When one over-indulges, it can also cause nausea, blurred vision, seizures, and even death.

The honey from these flowers has been traded in Europe since the 1700’s, when it was mixed with alcohol. In Turkey, not only do the poisonous rhododendrons abound, but the mountains around the Black Sea provide the perfect climate for these flowers to grow in huge swaths. When bees make honey in these fields, no other nectars get mixed in — and the result is deli bal (“mad honey”), strong and pure.


Wild rhododendrons – the source of mad honey. Photo source

The product makes up only a teeny percentage of the Black Sea’s honey production, but it has long held a strong Turkish following. It is used as a medicine it to treat hypertension, diabetes mellitus and some different stomach ailments. It’s so potent that a mere teaspoon, mixed with milk and drunk, is enough to go to your head.

Apparently this mad honey has also been used as a weapon. In 67 B.C. Roman soldiers invaded the Black Sea region. Locals loyal to the reigning King Mithridates lined the Romans’ path with chunks of mad honeycomb. The invading army ate these with gusto, and driven into an intoxicated stupor by the hallucinogenic honey, the flailing soldiers became easy prey, and were killed.

This honey isn’t illegal in Turkey, and can be bought and sold, although one must search hard for it, as it’s not on display at the local grocery store.


Turkish “mad honey” Photo source

For some more interesting information about Turkish mad honey, GO HERE.

In Nepal, the hallucinogenic honey is made by the Himalayan Cliff Honeybee, the largest honeybee in the world. This bee builds large nests on the edges of cliffs at elevations of over 9000 feet! The bees also collect the nectar and pollen of poisonous rhododendrons that grow freely in the area, and their honey is prized for its hallucinogenic nature.

Honey Hunters

A Nepalese beekeeper collecting honey from Himalayan Cliff Bees. Photo source.


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