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Brother Adamson

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  • Beekeeping Experience
    Commercial Beekeeper

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  • Location
    Otago

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  1. It's a mixed bag in the deep south. Plenty of operators are out of cash and hanging in by the skin of their teeth. But that is how it always was. The ones that have low cost operations and low income expectations aren't going anywhere. For the benefit of you north islanders, low income means gross annual income around $150 per hive. Some honey is getting cleared out of sheds for $3-4 per kg. The operators that don't have a rmp really need some alternative income, from a second job or the pension. We do need some rationalisation to take place, and the prices to lift to around $5-6 per kg. Time
  2. There is a company owned by 8 beekeepers based in Mosgiel called Honey Products NZ. They have already established a Brand, set up a packing and exporting facility and made a substantial investment in taking control of their marketing. It might be a good idea to talk to them and see if they are keen for new shareholders considering how much blood and sweat it takes to get something like this started.
  3. Definitely a more profitable and satisfying option long term. Also if there were more regen ag farmers in my area I would be happy, as they are more dependant on their beekeeper than they are on the fertiliser rep. There is an interesting film called "the Pollinators" that looks at all the bee death drama in the U.S. and it puts up regen ag as the possible solution. Even before this, we had been giving out alternative species to white clover for farmers to try, mainly for drought tolerance. So there could be a quiet revolution beginning on this front.
  4. We went to the Linnburn Station field day it was awesome to see about 20+ honey species in his paddocks and they all got the chance to flower so a fantastic environment for healthy bees. But yes, buckwheat, sunflower, vetch etc would produce a multifloral honey that is worthless. So we circle back to the question of how to sell a bit of sizzle with the sausage so that it is worthwhile having the bees there. BTW I understand he sold another farm to get the $1 mil to buy the massive seed drill/ roller combo. So it's the sort of farming philosophy that can be embraced if the business financially
  5. I don't really understand it myself, but it seems we lost our international supermarket space for table honeys from about 2015. Its now taken by Canada, Argentina, etc. I expect a few thousand tonnes would go at the Argentinian/canadian price to keep things afloat for people, but there are presently no buyers/exporters with that interest as far as I am aware.
  6. If anybody is curious about non-manuka values in the US this is the monthly USDA honey report: https://www.ams.usda.gov/mnreports/fvmhoney.pdf It shows that American white clover is selling for about $1.50 per pound (approx NZD $5.30 per kg), Argentinean clover for a bit less than that. But the only NZ clover honey sold into the US so far this year has been 1 container at about NZ $3.20 per KG! So nobody has a bulk market there, and certainly not at a premium to US honey. Of course, not a good time to be getting one either.
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