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Research and Development Apiary at News International

The BEE You project is very lucky to have such a talented and well-connected group of beekeeping experts working with and supporting us. This year we have been fortunate enough for our funder “Our Bright Future” to allow us to create a new post. This post is a research and development officer which has been filled by Ian Morris. Ian has been a beekeeper for over 7 years and brings a wealth of experience and knowledge. The role involves a mixture of teaching beekeeping to our students but also helping to develop apiary sites for training and also product making.

Very excitingly behind the scenes we are developing and testing new bee-related product ranges using beeswax propolis and of course honey. Our new branding is also in its final stages so watch this space.

Photography by Ian Morris

With Ian’s local knowledge and links, he has developed a relationship with News International in Knowsley. Working with the staff and management at the site we now have 15 hives within the grounds with the view to the extent the apiary here by an additional 10 hives either later in the year or next spring. The site is a very green space which gives the bees plenty of opportunities to forage. Very interestingly a bee will forage up to a 3 mile radius from their hives. It was with this in mind that Honey from the apiary has been sent for testing to the National Botanical gardens of wales to see what plants the bees had been dinning on. The bees from the apiary had foraged on 9 different species of plant one of the main plants being clover as well as a mix of trees and wildflower. After the results were shared with the company they have now decided to replant all the grassed areas on their site with plants that will be even more beneficial to our bees. The company are planning to seed bomb a big part of the area with wildflowers. A great success story for the bees the project and our environment. Thank you New International for supporting our project.

Written by Lynne Kavanagh & Ian Morris

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