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Making Propolis Extract

This sheet will explain a method for extracting propolis for use. Propolis extract is made by dissolving propolis collected from honey bee colonies into alcohol and straining out the precipitate.
The best alcohol to use is 70% ethyl alcohol (also known as grain alcohol or Everclear). This would allow the tincture to be used internally or externally. You can use rubbing alcohol if the tincture will be used externally only.
Although rare some people are allergic to propolis so precautions should be taken. All precautions with regard to alcohol should be taken.


Propolis Extract Procedure

1. Collect propolis from the bee hive. The propolis should be clean and free of wax, paint, wood etc. The propolis should be in small pieces. The smaller the better but no larger than a marble.
2. Determine the percentage propolis you want to extract. It is not recommended that concentrations higher than 30% be extracted. If you require a higher percentage, make a 30% extract and concentrate it as described below.
3. Place the proper amount of alcohol and propolis (see chart below) into a container and seal the top. Shake and store in a warm dark place. I put it in a brown bag on the counter.
4. Two or three times per day shake the container and return to warm dark place. Continue this for 2 weeks.
5. Filter the liquid through a coffee filter. The liquid is now ready for use.


                     
   

tincture

100% alcohol

propolis

 

grams

or

ml

grams

10%

900

 

1146

100

20%

800

 

1019

200

30%

700

 

892

300

         
         

tincture

70% alcohol

propolis

 

grams

or

ml

grams

10%

900

 

1073

100

20%

800

 

953

200

30%

700

 

834

300

         
 

tincture

100% alcohol

propolis

 

oz.

or

fl. Oz.

oz.

10%

22

 

27.0

2.5

20%

17

 

21.0

4.25

30%

17

 

21.0

7.25

         
         

tincture

70% alcohol

propolis

 

oz.

or

fl. Oz.

oz.

10%

22

 

25.3

2.5

20%

17

 

19.6

4.25

30%

17

 

19.6

7.25

         
 
Charts for extraction using Metric measurements.   Charts for extraction using US measurements  


Propolis Tincture Concentration Procedure

1. Make extract as above to a known percent. Find the percent you made above in column 1 in the chart below. Then in column 2 find the desired percent propolis. Follow across to column 3 to find the amount of extract to evaporate

                     

start extract %

desired extract %

% volume to reduce

 

10%

20%

50%

10%

30%

66.7%

10%

40%

75%

20%

30%

33.4%

20%

40%

50%

30%

40%

25%

If you have 10% extract and you want to have 40 % you would have to let 75% of the alcohol evaporate.  If you started with 1 cup, you would let it evaporate until you have 1/4 cup remaining.      

2. Let the container set with the cover off until the correct amount is evaporated off. You can hurry it along by warming it up. Be careful because alcohol is flammable.

                     

 

Propolis Salve (3%)

1. Start by making a 30% extraction mixture.
2. Mix 1 part extract with 9 parts petroleum jelly by weight. Start with extract and slowly mix in the petroleum jelly. You can liquefy the jelly by heating in a double boiler but you must continue to stir until it solidifies or the propolis will settle to the bottom.

 

                     
   

oz. petroleum jelly

oz propolis extract (30%)

teaspoons propolis extract

     

1.75

0.19444

1.5

3.75

0.41667

3

7.5

0.83333

6

13

1.44444

10.25

     
               
                     

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The contents of this page have not been reviewed or approved by the University of Minnesota.