Saturday Farmers’ Market Vendor Feature: Neighbourly Bee
This week at the UBC Farm Farmers’ Market, Neighbourly Bee will be pouring their local blueberry blossom honey on tap. Bring you favourite honey jar and fill up with this honey at $14/lb. Here are some questions we asked to find out more about Neighbourly Bee!
What makes your honey different from the honey we get at grocery stores?
Our honey is harvested in small batch extraction, giving us the opportunity to characterise our honey by season and floral source. Always raw, unfiltered and of course 100% Honey. Neighbourly Bee honey is harvested and identified by areas, giving unique and distinct flavour from season to season; this allows me to be more specific with taste profiles reflecting the true essence of what specific nectar sources provide.
Is your blueberry blossom honey from the blueberry plant?
Yeah! To get blueberry honey, the bees visit blueberry flowers and collect the nectar and convert it to honey. Through that process blueberry bushes are also pollinated. Did you know that a pollinated blueberry bush will yield ten times as much fruit!
I notice that your alfalfa clover honey looks sort of like a creamed honey. Is it a creamed honey? What’s the difference between your blueberry blossom versus your alfalfa clover honey?
The alfalfa clover honey is actually not creamed. It is made from alfalfa and sweet yellow clover nectar. The characteristics of this nectar creates a white, creamy, light honey. The origin of the flower is a direct correlation of the characteristic of the honey. The blueberry blossom honey, for example, comes from blueberry flower nectar. Both these honeys are 100% honey but have a different colour, texture and taste.
Where’s your bee farm?
Our Apiary (which is the word for a honeybee farm) is located on Byrne Rd. We share our space with Seed of Life; who grows vegetables and also sell their produce at the UBC Farm! We make a point do this as a collaboration in order to practice the relationship required between farmers and beekeepers for a sustainable and healthy ecosystem.
How long have you been bee keeping?
This is my second season, so two years!
Is it just you who owns Neighbourly Bee?
Yes, it’s just me for now!
How did you get into bee keeping?
I just really like bees and they are super cute. I love playing a role in our local food system and working with farmers to find a way to continually be innovative with our farming practices; especially when it comes to effective ways to work together.
What brought you to the UBC Farm?
I liked that the UBC Farm is on a working farm. I think its exciting for people to be able to visit a farm and see where the food is coming from. I was also excited to be beside my farm mates, Seed of Life!
What would you like your customers to know about your business?
Neighbourly Bee is a place for you to get 100% honey and to learn more about bees and pollination. I’d like people to understand the collaboration between the farmers and beekeepers. We really have to work on the same page and be transparent about pesticide and fungicide use so that we can create a sustainable way of beekeeping and farming. Currently, there are some conflicts between pesticide-use that hurts the bees.
Anything else you want to share?
Our farm is open to the public and we love visitors. You can follow us on social media or check our website www.NeighbourlyBee.com to stay up to date with our hours, store, events and classes. We will be doing a beekeeping course this fall and again in the spring. We will also be launching the areas first community beekeeping space. This is an area on our farm where you can keep your own bees. It’s a great opportunity for anyone who would like to get into beekeeping but doesn’t have an area of their own; or anyone who is interested in keeping but would like to be connected with tools, resources and a community of beekeepers.
If you want to learn more about Neighbourly Bee, check them out on their website and instagram. You can see all of their upcoming dates at the UBC Farm Market here. earn more about other market vendors and topics on our Saturday Farmers’ Market blog! These weekly market blog posts are linked from our newsletter when they are posted; to get regular updates, make sure to join our newsletter here.