Learn the Art of Beekeeping
Somerset honey from the best producers and beekeepers is in great demand, since running this site I have had several enquiries from hotels and restaurants looking for a good supply and when I tried to buy some today I found out that much of this season's honey has already sold out, and there won't be any more until next Summer. I asked Christiane Hare of the Somerset Beekeepers Association why.
"Our own bees produce honey from brambles, which flower in July" she explains, "the extremely wet weather hampered their activity and drastically reduced the amount of honey they could produce. But it's not just a one-off, our bees are really struggling and we need to give them a helping hand."
You can help by taking up beekeeping and producing your own honey. You could sell the surplus, but it's more likely you'll end up giving it away to friends, family and neighbours or exchanging it for other Somerset produce!
Manuka honey has recently been elevated to 'super food' status, on account of its antibacterial properties and antioxidant activity, but the health benefits of honey have been documented for thousands of years.
- Honey can relieve a sore throat
- Eating a spoonful of LOCAL honey a day, throughout the year is thought to reduce hay fever. The reason it has to be local is that the bees have to have garthered pollen from the local flowers you are allergic to
- Honey is known to raise antioxidant levels, generally the darker the honey the more antioxidant activity
- All honeys contain the antibacterial agent hydrogen peroxide, but this is destroyed by exposure to heat, light and body fluids, but some, such as Manuka honey, also have additional antibacterial action that is more resistant.
Somerset Beekeepers Association are running a free Introduction to Beekeeping course. The tutor will be Gerald Fisher, who recently appeared on the BBC programme 'One man and his bees'. The course covers everything you'll need to start up, from bee biology, to honey production. It takes place at Watchfield Village Hall on Thursday evenings from 17th Jan to 21st Feb.
Contact Christiane Hare 01934 750305 for more details
To find out more about the Somerset Beekepers Association click this link