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German Klink

NZBF Selling honey

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Hypothetical question: What should one do if he finds himself with more honey then he could extract in his kitchen and give away to friends and family...I am talking about a couple of hundreds kg.

Contract extractors? Are there kitchens that can be hired for that? What testing besides Tutin would be needed for official selling?

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11 hours ago, German Klink said:

What should one do if he finds himself with more honey then he could extract in his kitchen and give away to friends and family.

 

Here is a start to the requirements of processing and selling http://www.foodsafety.govt.nz/industry/sectors/honey-bee/processing-selling/

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14 hours ago, German Klink said:

Are there kitchens that can be hired for that?

Have you approached your local council to see if there are any kitchens (such as a local hall) in your area that meet the NP1 standards? 

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14 hours ago, German Klink said:

Hypothetical question: What should one do if he finds himself with more honey then he could extract in his kitchen and give away to friends and family...

Technically you can't even give it away as food if its been extracted in a non-approved facility. Anecdotally that practice is common. I've never heard of people being prosecuted for giving away honey. But it's worth remembering what is and isn't legal when you come to discuss it with authorities. 

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2 hours ago, Rob Stockley said:

Technically you can't even give it away as food if its been extracted in a non-approved facility.

I was going to mention this but in the link it says 

 

  • Giving honey to, or swapping it for produce with, your friends and family, is not regulated under the Food Act.

So it leaves things a bit ambiguous 

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Cool, thanks a lot guys. That gives me a good starting point. There is still a little bit of time to sort that out.

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5 hours ago, Grant said:

I was going to mention this but in the link it says 

 

  • Giving honey to, or swapping it for produce with, your friends and family, is not regulated under the Food Act.

So it leaves things a bit ambiguous 

Hmmmm, so you can swap honey for produce but you can't barter with it? Agree, ambiguous.

 

On the bright side, neither the Food Act nor the Animal Products Act seem to apply to honey that is given away. I got the wrong end of the stick on that one. 

 

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Tutin requirements still apply though

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3 minutes ago, yesbut said:

Tutin requirements still apply though

You'd hope so. But even that's unclear. If it's not for sale or trade....

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From MPI

 

"

Beekeepers who do not sell their products or export them

If you are a hobbyist beekeeper who produces honey and other bee products for your own consumption, you do not need to operate under the Animal Products Act 1999 or the Food Act 2014. However, MPI recommends that you take precautions as described in Part 1 of the standard for managing tutin contamination in honey.

Please note: if you donate or barter your honey, then that is a form of trade and you must comply with the appropriate requirements.

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1 hour ago, Rob Stockley said:

On the bright side, neither the Food Act nor the Animal Products Act seem to apply to honey that is given away. I got the wrong end of the stick on that one

I don't think you got the wrong end of the stick, I think the rules have changed. 

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9 hours ago, yesbut said:

If you are a hobbyist beekeeper who produces honey and other bee products for your own consumption

Checked the wording in the Acts and it seems you can also give it away for others' consumption.

8 hours ago, Grant said:

I don't think you got the wrong end of the stick, I think the rules have changed. 

Maybe. It wouldn't be the first time I'd interpretted rules more restrictive than intended.....

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My only question is?

Has someone got an outline of the physical requirements of said kitchen/area for extraction and processing under NP1.

 

I have worked in the food industry for years and could build a clean room without thinking but from what I can see the kitchen at home is acceptable as long as you can tick all the boxes and prove that you are managing your processes correctly.

 

Has anyone got some info they can share about their set-up please?

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there is no requirement for your kitchen in the new food act. The whole point of the new food act was to throw out all the prescriptive requirements such that you are registered and not your kitchen. You can use kitchen at home if you want to. In order to get NP1 you have to have council or private company auditor review your operation and how you want to do it. Paperwork on how you will manage a recall if there is hair in your honey and how you will ensure the safety of your food from extraction to bottling and cleaning after. So, the person you need to speak to is the auditor. It is a competitive area with massive variation in requirements. Some of them will not talk to you until you have filled in pages of forms about how enormous you are, all the shifts you run and the thousands of employees you have. They'll be very sad you only tick the NP1 box. Prices similarly range in an eye boggling amount, which also shows how much BS is floating about that hasn't flushed. I have not proceeded with NP1 yet. One lucky person in the Hauraki Plains has NP1, and their council food officer is authorised to do audits so they got their NP1 all in one place, council rego fee and council audit fee. If you live in an area that does that, you are a lucky one. As to what the auditor requires, best to make an appointment and go visit the council and take a pen and paper with you. I'm super keen to find out more about people who have done this.. One auditor did reply to me from SI who sounds really good, but I'm still procrastinating because the total fees will exceed the total worth of all honey I produce in first two years. So, my whole effort would amount to creating work with a negative return. It is not terribly encouraging.

 

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Thanks for that @ChrisM , that confirms what I was thinking. I might do some further research into who is about in my area re this. While the bee club is available for use, managing my time to get all my boxes there when I need to is the hardest part of the whole process. Being able to do the job when I can is a much better option for me.

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If your bee club itself is registered under the new food act in NP1 it may be for extraction, but not storing nor selling. You have to be clear about what is covered and what is not. Maybe a particular person has to be there when it is done, or whatever the proposition was from the club that was then audited. I am sure it would be of interest to a large number of people in bee clubs, as to what your club has done and how it works practically as well as how much it cost the club to set up. If there is any chance of getting someone from your club or yourself to let us see a copy of the paperwork it would be handy. I know it is not currently economic for me, but if the BoP Beekeeper Group could do it and costs were spread over the people interested then it could maybe possibly become economic. 

 

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They are currently in the process of relocating the clubrooms to a different location and there are plans to convert a shipping container as their extraction room.

I'm sure an email from the BOP club to FBC would shed some light on what is involved. I haven't had time to get involved in it over the last few months so only have limited knowledge of the progress to date.

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2 hours ago, Lee Taylor said:

Thanks for that @ChrisM , that confirms what I was thinking. I might do some further research into who is about in my area re this. While the bee club is available for use, managing my time to get all my boxes there when I need to is the hardest part of the whole process. Being able to do the job when I can is a much better option for me.

Have a look at the 'Farmer's Market Honey' thread. May be of some interest to you.

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Hi @ChrisM I have been looking into NP1 registration here in Turangi and have run into the same brick walls regarding finding an auditor. Our Taupo district council staff state they have the skill to undertake an audit but are not registered to do so at this time. I have ticked all the required boxes and only have a water test to go (have couriered off water samples three times so far but they have not managed to reach the lab within the time and temperature requirements so they were discarded)

So now to find an auditor the closest for me either TeAwamutu , Hastings or Hamilton all 2.30hours drive one way $$$$$ then $170 per hour for 3hours of work?.? and a further trip if I don't comply with something.  I'm going to wait till next year and see if the council comes to the party or I might go for the next level up something the local council is qualified to check!

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Just now, Oma said:

Hi @ChrisM I have been looking into NP1 registration here in Turangi and have run into the same brick walls regarding finding an auditor. Our Taupo district council staff state they have the skill to undertake an audit but are not registered to do so at this time. I have ticked all the required boxes and only have a water test to go (have couriered off water samples three times so far but they have not managed to reach the lab within the time and temperature requirements so they were discarded)

So now to find an auditor the closest for me either TeAwamutu , Hastings or Hamilton all 2.30hours drive one way $$$$$ then $170 per hour for 3hours of work?.? and a further trip if I don't comply with something.  I'm going to wait till next year and see if the council comes to the party or I might go for the next level up something the local council is qualified to check!

 

I had a useful and supportive call from MPI on this subject, they would actually be keen on your feedback. In regards to Tauranga City Council, they said that while they would take my $280 rego fee they would not insist on an audit being done until such time as there was a Tauranga based auditor. So, no audit required at all! but in the longer run someone could set up shop charging big bucks and I could be stuck with it else a whole bunch of other stress. As we don't produce honey its all uneconomic for the moment but I will continue to prod and poke and around. The WBPDC is just over the fence and I wonder if they have people on their staff that do audits for western bay of plenty residents.

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Yes I think a conversation with MPI giving them some feedback on how their decisions work on the ground might be a good idea. Will post results on the forum.

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1 hour ago, Oma said:

Yes I think a conversation with MPI giving them some feedback on how their decisions work on the ground might be a good idea. Will post results on the forum.

yep. In fact they don't write the laws, laws are thrust upon them, just like us. But interpretation and putting them into action is a tricky business, based on the number of times we all have struck difficulty. Some of it can be fixed and some of it needs a new law. I prefer to think that in this case of NP1 the ideas were good and it could be easily fixed if there was a will. 

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I  remember there was a time when laws were often a backstop, upheld as & when the need arose, rather than every flaming colon full stop and dash

enforced at risk of prison as it  seems to be these days.

 

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9 hours ago, ChrisM said:

yep. In fact they don't write the laws, laws are thrust upon them, just like us. But interpretation and putting them into action is a tricky business, based on the number of times we all have struck difficulty. Some of it can be fixed and some of it needs a new law. I prefer to think that in this case of NP1 the ideas were good and it could be easily fixed if there was a will. 

MPI definitely seemed to be developing and formulating the laws regarding Manuka Honey testing, and they are collecting and processing the submissions made to them by the industry pointing out the stupidity of much they are proposing. I went to the meeting at Claudelands, and it was obvious from the questions asked that the likes of the professionals at Ruakura had not been consulted or involved. The NP 1 has been designed by those in the Ministry For Everything without any real grasp of small crop extraction, and tainted by the constant media coverage of the zillion dollar earnings of Manuka honey. As ChrisM points out, the costs of auditors etc are utterly out of wack for most of the people who would be looking to get the NP 1 in place - particularly in Auckland not so super city.

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Given the risks with honey are relatively small, it would seem like it was possible for MPI to open up registration of NP1 honey auditors to a large number of local council food safety staff who already deal with much more dangerous foods and such. This would immediately empower all councils to be able to register and audit NP1 honey extractors in one operation. Secondly, it would be possible for clubs, groups to propose best practise methods for farmer's market honey that could be used nationally by both beekeepers and councils to provide a safety standard and guidelines so that all the councils can audit to the same level. Provided the document is simple and quick, the council fees need not be more than one hour ($140+gst?). Still not cheap if you only have 10kg of honey to donate to the school fair, but probably the best we can hope for in ADDITION to paying $280+gst the council for MPI registration.  As a separate issue, I wonder how many people have registered for NP1 and if the number is quite low, then MPI might already know its simply not working.

 

Speaking of fees, the ApiNZ fees are also something that is beyond me. This is a fact, it isn't out of malice nor a complaint. Neverthelss, this kind of best practise template and getting MPI to understand the problem and the cure could be co-ordinated by the national body. I still wont be able to afford the current ApiNZ fees as they would apply to me, but that's a separate problem how they choose to charge out membership and what benefits a small member might actually get from it. It isn't just the MFE that is tainted by Manuka.

 

Talking of clubs, the Auckland Club has an "extraction day", but someone from the club mentioned that it is only for the club's hives at unitec and not for members at large to roll up with their boxes. But for beekeepers with only 2 or 3 hives at the most it might make sense to join a club and pool resources in regards to extraction and gear. Whether it be crush and strain or that they have a spinner, there could be room for a wax press (aka capping extruder). Continuous process ones from Paradise or Lyson in the 50kg/hr category are worth around $5k. But if 100 people in a club put in $50 each the sum can be reached quite easily. If the club is a legal entity and can be allowed to apply for NP1 then with the correct checks and balances that is an avenue that could be explored too. It could be a good way of containing and training a rapidly growing number of loose cannons, because huge amounts of hobby honey will currently be extracted and gifted without any oversight whatsoever.

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