A group of beekeepers has formed a Beekeeper’s Coop at the Nemarket Farmers' Market. So far Ellie Palmer and Amy Robinson have been selling their homemade beeswax products such as 100% natural body balm, lip balm, anti-itch soap and candles.
Customers have been asking for honey, and starting in September they will be selling some, even though they have had terrible crop yields themselves. Why has the honey supply been so low in New Hampshire this year? Many problems have been plaguing bees for the last twenty years from loss of habitat (wildflower fields turned in to manicured lawns), pesticide use, and a number of imported diseases, especially the varroa mite. But this summer has seen a particularly low honey yield.
Remember the twenty seven days of rain in June and July? Honeybees do not gather nectar in the rain and our local honey crop is dependent on a good June nectar flow. Although there has been a tremendous late summer flow from goldenrod, asters, and other wildflowers, much of that honey needs to be left for the bees so they can survive the winter.
Amy Robinson has contacted other beekeepers in northern New England and has obtained good quality raw honey from beekeepers she respects. (These beekeepers have larger operations so can still produce a crop in spite of bad weather.) So you will still have an opportunity to buy honey, all of which is from less than 100 miles away.
The Beekeeper’s Coop will be a vendor at the market on September 5, 19 and 26th. For more information, contact Amy.
The Newmarket Farmers' Market is open Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Stone Church parking lot through October 10th. The weekly vendors offer fresh and organic food choices.
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