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ABF E-Buzz: October 2011
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ABF E-Buzz — October 2011

In This Issue:

Welcome Back to ABF E-Buzz

by Tim Tucker, ABF Membership and Marketing Committee Member and ABF E-Buzz Editor

Asters in the hollow,
faces shining bright.
Days falling shorter they,
dance in a gentler light.

Welcome back to this October issue of ABF E-Buzz. For those of you who harvested honey this season, we hope that your work is complete and that it was a good year. I have heard reports of many, however, who harvested little or nothing due to the drought and extreme weather. This will go down as one of our poorest years ever and it is good that we diversified into selling nucs in the spring, so we had a little bit of income to post against the expenses this year. Next year we hope to be able to sell around 400 nucs and will start some queen sales as well. Good to not have all your eggs in one basket, I guess.  

This month we have some fantastic articles for you to enjoy, which include a beekeeper of the month story about Oliver Petty who has been a member of the ABF for 61 years. I enjoyed talking with him and getting to know him a little over the phone. A special thanks to his son, Dean, who provided me with some additional information and the great pictures of his dad.

In an exciting new "Science Buzz," Peter Teal reports on the discovery of a new hormone in honey bees called methyl farnesoate, which is tied to amounts of juvenile hormone that have an effect on the division of labor in honey bee colonies. You won't want to miss this new information Peter is sharing with us.

Anna Kettlewell has a great report on what the Honey Queen and Princess have been doing this past month...they have been busy as bees in a nectar flow!  It is such a good program to have furthering our cause of educating the public about the value of honey and the honey bee. There's also a "Marketing Buzz" article and some new "Buzzmakers," which will help to keep you up to speed on what's going on in the industry and perhaps learn a thing or two. You will also find a report on the ABF's first-ever "Conversation with a Beekeeper" Webinar series, which featured Jerry Hayes. It was very informative and you won't want to miss the next one that the ABF Education Committee plans for February 2012. Last, but most certainly not least, don't forget to register for the upcoming ABF annual conference in Las Vegas in January.  I hope to see you all there!

Thanks again for sharing some time with us and we hope you find this issue of ABF E-Buzz informative and valuable to your beekeeping experience. If you have anything you would like to include in an upcoming issue, just drop me a note at tuckerb@hit.net.

Bee There: Register Today for the 2012 ABF Annual Conference

by Robin E. Dahlen, CAE, ABF Executive Director

The 2012 North American Beekeeping Conference & Tradeshow, January 10-14, 2012, is right around the corner and we can't wait to see you all in exciting Las Vegas. The agenda is complete, featuring valuable presentations from industry leaders, and the exhibit hall is filling up fast with all the latest and greatest innovations in the beekeeping industry. Now, all we need is YOU!

Your conference registration includes the following:

  • Welcome reception with light hors d'oeuvres
  • Two-and-a-half days of general session presentations from industry experts
  • Special Interest Group meetings
  • Various interactive workshops
  • Tradeshow full of the latest and greatest products and services in the beekeeping industry
  • American Honey Queen Reception with light hors d'oeuvres
  • 2012 American Honey Show
  • Serious Sideliner Symposium
  • Thursday evening social activities with refreshments
  • Daily refreshments breaks

To register online, please visit the conference Web site at www.nabeekeepingconference.com and follow the links to registration.

And while you are registering for the conference, don't forget to make your hotel reservations at the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino and take advantage of the discounted group rate of $109. Reservations can be made by calling the hotel directly at 888.746.6955 and referencing the 2012 North American Beekeeping Conference (group code SRBEE12) or online at: http://www.harrahs.com/CheckGroupAvailability.do?propCode=RLV&groupCode=SRBEE12.

Last year, we sold out our room block early. Therefore, we encourage you to make your reservations now to ensure a room at the conference hotel.

Additional information, including all registration rates, guest room accommodations, the conference schedule, invited speakers, session topics and much more, can be found on the conference Web site at www.nabeekeepingconference.com. Be sure to check the Web site often, as additional conference details will be posted as soon as they are made available.

We are looking forward to a fantastic conference and we hope to see you there. We have lots of information to share with you and your participation is very beneficial to the ABF, as well as other conference attendees. Make your plans now, as you won't want to miss out on this all-important conference!

Bee Aware: Imidacloprid On Almonds May Be History

by Kim Flottum, Editor, Bee Culture Magazine

BREAKING NEWS...Bee Culture has received a call from Steve Ellis, a member of the National Honey Bee Advisory Board, the group of dedicated beekeepers working to make beekeeping a safer place by making pesticide businesses, as well as farmers, applicators, sellers, manufacturers and researchers, more aware of the incredible damage their products can do to honey bees and pollinators.

The National Honey Bee Advisory Board is in Washington, D.C., this week, meeting with, among others, representatives of the EPA and Bayer CropScience. During the discussions it became apparent that Bayer was voluntarily removing almond trees from the label of their imidacloprid products.
Our call this morning was to inform us, and now you, that the EPA is reviewing this request. Yes, reviewing. It seems that crops are so seldom removed from a label, especially by voluntary request, that the internal engine at EPA isn't quite sure how to make that happen. So, they are reviewing it.

Mr. Ellis was quite sure the review process would be swift and action taken very soon. Hopefully, before it is to be used on almonds during the coming season, thus saving billions of honey bees from the opportunity of exposure to this chemical.

Members of the National Honey Bee Advisory Board are all volunteers, not supported by any national or regional beekeeping organization. They are to be commended for their ongoing pursuit of a better, safer life for honey bees, beekeepers, and all pollinators.

Bee Informed: Petition for Standard of Identity Rejected by FDA

by Tim Tucker, ABF Membership and Marketing Committee Member and ABF E-Buzz Editor

The FDA recently rejected the application for a standard of identity for honey, concluding that the petition did not provide reasonable grounds for the FDA to adopt the Codex standard for honey. It also concluded that the agency's existing enforcement tools are sufficient to address the concerns of the petition and "the establishment of a standard of identity would not aid the agency in its enforcement efforts or help insure industry compliance."

The argument presented in the original petition was that a standard of identity for honey would promote honesty and fair dealing in the interest of consumers, because consumers are confused about what the term "honey" means in terms of the food's composition. The FDA concluded that establishing a standard of identity for honey would not provide additional assurance that consumers would be informed any better. The label should provide any information on what might be added to the honey and it is the label that should alleviate any confusion that consumers might have.

While it is certainly true that some products are mislabeled, the proposed standard of identity would not provide any additional enforcement authority beyond what currently exists for improperly branded foods.  The proposed goals are 1) informing consumers who are confused about what "honey" means in terms of the food's composition; 2) combating economic adulteration by aiding enforcement and industry compliance; and 3) promoting honesty and fair dealing within the food trade in general, where pure honey is highly valued as an ingredient in other foods.  Those goals "can all be achieved using existing FDA enforcement tools" and concluded that a standard of identity for honey would not provide any "additional support toward the achievement of these goals."

While we in the industry tend to disagree, it will be a difficult hurdle to get the FDA to reconsider any time in the near future, so it will be necessary to continue efforts at the state level for individual standard of identity establishment.

Science Buzz

Kaitlin Deutsch

by Peter Teal, Center for Medical, Agricultural and Veterinary Entomology, USDA-ARS

Last month's "Science Buzz" was devoted to looking at what is published on physiological regulation of behavioral division of labor in worker bees.  From that it was obvious that many hormones and factors (juvenile hormone, insulin, vitellogenin) are at work.  This month I want to throw another factor into the mix, a new hormone, we recently identified from bees, grasshoppers, the small hive beetle, stinkbugs and flies.  What can I say? We work on a whole bunch of bugs.
The majority of the work on bees was done by the second of the two high school interns I have had working in the lab for the past two summers, Kaitlin Deutsch, and a wonderful Post-Doctoral associate, Ana Cabrera-Cordon.  Kaitlin is now a freshman at the University of South Florida and is going to be an outstanding scientist, and Ana is making great strides in developing molecular pesticides on Varroa mites in my lab.
Kaitlin's first task was to find out if the new hormone, methyl farnesoate, was in worker honey bees and if the amounts of this hormone were tied to amounts of juvenile hormone, which we know has an effect on division of labor in worker bees.  As shown in the figure, what she found was, yes, there is a connection, but when bees age amounts of methyl farnesoate decrease while those of juvenile hormone (JH in the pictures) increase.  So, was there an importance to this? Well, juvenile hormone and methyl farnesoate are really closely related; in fact, juvenile hormone comes from methyl farnesoate! Knowing that, we thought that maybe methyl farnesoate (MF in the pictures) was also involved in behavioral changes associated with bee aging.  If that were so we thought that we might see a change in some other factor associate with aging.

Ana Cabrera-Cordon

So Ana, our "molecular guru," and Kaitlin took a look at what the gene that produces vitellogenin did in bees during the same times.  Basically, the more expression of the vitellogenin gene the more vitellogenin is produced. They found that the gene expression was highest from three to 15 days and then declined - just as would be predicted if vitellogenin decreases as bee become foragers.

So, the next question we asked was what does juvenile hormone or methyl farnesoate do to the expression of the vitellogenin gene?  We applied methyl farnesoate or juvenile hormone to workers on the day that they became adults and looked at vitellogenin gene expression three days later.  The results were really exciting for a number of reasons.  First, JH had absolutely no effect on expression of the vitellogenin gene.  Second, and more importantly, for us, was the fact that expression of the gene was lower in the methyl farnesoate treated bees!  We also looked to see if the levels of hormone were different in the treated bees and found that they were exactly the same as in the untreated bees.  So, there was no extra juvenile hormone or methyl farnesoate in the bee blood.  It was all used up.

This research is still preliminary and we are still conducting experiments to see what happens in older bees (foragers), but at this point we are hypothesizing that methyl farnesoate has an important role in regulation of behavioral changes in worker bees.  We also think that it may be important in keeping workers from becoming queens.  So, if the queen dies, we think that it is possible that methyl farnesoate levels will decline in the workers that start to lay drone eggs.  These are all just thoughts now, but as with all science if we didn't have these thoughts we wouldn't discover anything.

I leave for Kenya in a week to work at the International Center for Insect Physiology and Ecology and will be working with Dr. Baldwin Torto on small hive beetle, Varroa mites and another bee pest, the large hive beetle, for a couple of weeks. Next month I hope to have an update on bee research in Africa.  I've been there before and if you think the Africanized bees in the United States are bad, try working with real African bees!

Bee Proud: Call for Entries for the 2012 American Honey Show

by Robin E. Dahlen, CAE, ABF Executive Director

The ABF invites you to enter the 2012 American Honey Show, which will be held during the 2012 North American Beekeeping Conference & Tradeshow in Las Vegas, Nevada, January 10-14, 2012. This is a prime opportunity to showcase your bees' abilities to produce the purest honey, the best wax and the most goodies.

The Honey Show will showcase the best examples of honey and beeswax. It includes 12 classes for honey, four for beeswax and the gift basket class. Also, the Honey Show Committee has announced that the theme for the Honey Gift Basket class this year will be "Super Bowl Party."

After the entries are judged, they will be auctioned to benefit the American Honey Queen Program.

Click here for the official show rules/regulations and entry form. NOTE: The entry form and appropriate fees must arrive at the ABF offices by Friday, December 16, 2011.

Questions? Contact the ABF office at 404.760.2875 or via e-mail at info@abfnet.org. You can also download some helpful Honey Show hints and tips by clicking here. Good luck!

Bee Educated: ABF's New "Conversation with a Beekeeper" Webinar Series a Huge Hit

by Tim Tucker, ABF Membership and Marketing Committee Member and ABF E-Buzz Editor

Jerry Hayes

The inaugural ABF Conversation with a Beekeeper Webinar was a resounding success, and presenter Jerry Hayes was very enjoyable and informative. Hayes, who is the chief of the Apiary Inspection Section for the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services' Division of Plant Industry, gave an hour-long presentation titled Pollinator Decline and the Managed Honey Bee.  Hayes participates in the CCD Working Group, the BIP Board and is a Project Apis m. Science Advisor. In addition, he has authored the "Classroom" column in the American Bee Journal for 25 years from which the book of the same name was developed. Hayes is also an author or co-author on 20+ honey bee research papers.

But, he wasn't always a beekeeper or in the industry. He started off as a high school teacher and hated it, but then he discovered beekeeping and, just like you, he devoured everything about honey bees. Soon after he obtained a degree in Apiculture he worked at the USDA ARS Bee Breeding and Stock Lab in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and then on to Dadant & Sons as director of New Product Development.

Hayes pointed out that the honey bee is today under stress from several sources and the industry is as well. Production agriculture is a dominant stressor, due to the amount of pesticides, herbicides and fungicides that are being used, and while they may not be acutely toxic, they are affecting bees and likely other insects in ways we are just now beginning to understand. Some studies are indicating that colonies that are exposed to inidicloprid appear to have problems with the pupae actually emerging as adults, reducing maturation numbers by as much as 62 percent.

But, there are the pesticides that beekeepers use as well being found in the wax and we don't know all the synergistic effects of so many different compounds and how they work together to become even more dangerous. It is very difficult to study all the compounds and all of their interrelationships.   One of his most dramatic examples of this was the story that years ago we had a problem with the disappearance of frogs and amphibians and the suspected culprit was Atrazine. Studies, however, seemed to show that it was not acutely toxic to these species, but further investigation showed that the Atrazine when running off into ponds and estuaries was affecting the top growing forms of algae, which allowed bottom growing algae to flourish. This, in turn, caused snails to flourish, which enabled a species of flatworm that affected the snails to flourish and it was these flatworms that eventually were affecting the health of the frogs.

It is the multitude of interrelationships that we have to learn to understand more fully and it is a very complex problem at times. Hayes's work involves him with many commercial beekeepers that move their hives multiple times each year and he estimates that some of these migratory beekeepers can lose up to 80 percent or more of their hives each year. They are constantly remaking nucs or buying packages to keep their operations moving. It is only because bees are able to be reproduced so easily that we are able to build back each year, but this type of survival is unsustainable.

As Jerry said a couple of times, the bees should all be dead already except for this remarkable rebuilding that goes on each year. You throw in all the other problems, such as loss of habitat, low honey prices, low pollination prices, varroa and the viruses they vector and it is amazing that the bees are surviving at all. His analogy that you can take your fist and place it on your chest or abdomen and this is the relative size of a varroa mite on the bee.   Can you imagine something that size sucking on your blood and the resultant wounds and infections that this size of parasite would cause? Absolutely amazing!

Well, if you missed this first Webinar, you won't want to miss the next Conversation with a Beekeeper session, which we hope will occur in February of next year. The ABF Education Committee is working hard to bring us more of these types of educational offerings and keep us all better informed. A big thank you to Jerry Hayes for sharing his vast knowledge of the bees with us once again.

EDITOR'S NOTE: ABF members that were unable to attend the session can download and experience the presentation at their convenience. Click here for access instructions and a link to the session download.

Beekeeper of the Month: Oliver Petty

by Tim Tucker, ABF Membership and Marketing Committee Member and ABF E-Buzz Editor

Oliver Petty

Oliver Petty has been a member of the ABF for 61 years, which is an accomplishment that very few of us will ever achieve. It is especially important that he remained active during a retirement from the business for over 30 years now.

Oliver sold his bees in the early 80s and settled into a lengthy retirement, often working for John Mespelt, who had purchased his bees, and up until about five years ago, still keeping 30 or 40 colonies going for fun. He said that his interest in the bees never diminished and he continues to be fascinated by them and what we learn about them today still.

Oliver was born in Creswell, Oregon, in 1914. He graduated from Oregon State College in 1940 and began a four-year tour of duty in the Civilian Public Service. He was a smoke jumper and actually jumped into 29 different situations to help fight and extinguish the fires.  Talk about a dangerous way to make a living! After his service, he worked with a beekeeper in Ojai, California (George Biggers) and learned the business before getting involved on his own.

In 1950, he married Loretta "Connie" Vaughan and settled in Oregon near Albany. He was able to purchase 500 colonies to start his operation, Fairview Apiaries. Oliver says he now has forgotten many of the details of running the bees, but his son, Dean, said that he kept very good notes on all of his visits to the bee yards and just what all the hives were doing.

Oliver does remember that the first pollination contract that he got was for $ 2.00 per hive and it seemed like a good deal. And, I guess if that totaled out to be a thousand dollars or more back in the early 50s it went a lot further than it would today. Most of his honey crops were made on fireweed and hairy vetch, which was everywhere back then. The vetch was considered a weed and the states began a spraying program with 2-4-D, which caused the bees many problems. There were years when he lost a large percentage of his colonies to the spraying that was so carelessly done.

Oliver was a very active member in the Oregon State Beekeepers Association and was influential in helping inspire others to get into the bee business and was willing to answer questions that new beekeepers might have. One of those is George Hansen, who spent a long night at one of these state meetings in Oliver's camper that he had pulled to the meeting.

Oliver's work truck

"Oliver is one on a short list of 'old timers' that were so incredibly helpful in giving me my start in beekeeping," says George. They spent most of the night snacking on crackers and talking about bees. "That was probably the key point in solidifying my becoming a beekeeper," George reflects. "I had been bitten by the bee bug before that evening, but afterward I was hopelessly lost to the fever. Beekeeping has changed since then, but I remember the things Oliver taught us as the baseline for my observations about what the bees are doing."

We never know how we affect people sometimes and Oliver very likely influenced many more people like George who have been keeping bees and retelling his stories and experiences with the bees for years and years.

His wife, Connie, passed away in 2007.  They were married for 57 years and had five children - Sylvia Hess (Ridgefield, Washington), Walter Petty (Eugene, Oregon), Dean Petty (Bozeman, Montana), Douglas Petty (deceased) and Martha Mackowiak (Haines, Arkansas). He has seven granddaughters, one grandson and two great grandsons.  He still lives independently at home and takes an hour walk every morning with his dog, Kempsey.  All of his bees have succumbed to colony collapse, so while he still has plenty of equipment around the shop and equipment in the front yard, all the hives at the home place are now empty.  He still sells honey out the backdoor, however, that he purchases from John Mespelt, who purchased his beekeeping operation in the early 80s.  He has customers who have been buying honey from him now for over 50 years.  He also had a 4-H bee club for years, starting in the early 60s, and kept it going for over 40 years, a service that helped many hobby beekeepers and even a few professionals get started.

Thank you, Oliver, for sharing a bit of your story with us, and a big thank you to his son, Dean, who provided the pictures for the article.

Honey Queen Buzz: Festival and Fair Season

by Anna Kettlewell, American Honey Queen Program Chair

Princess Allison

Greetings fellow beekeepers! I write to you as October dwindles away and the crisp fall air begins to invade the Midwest. October, much like the late summer and September, is a busy promotion time for our American Honey Queen and Princess.

October traditionally marks the end of the fair and festival season for the Queen and Princess. Queen Teresa returned to the east coast in early October, participating in another annual American Honey Queen and Princess promotion - the Topsfield Fair in Topsfield, Massachusetts.  Billed as America's Oldest Fair, it proudly hosts a phenomenal bee exhibit (an entire building at that!). Stop and visit this fair, held the first week of October each year. Princess Allison rounded out her fair and festival promotions with the Oregon Ridge Nature Honey Harvest in Maryland, the Fryeburg Fair in Maine, and the Texas State Fair.

Queen Teresa

Both Teresa and Allison quickly transitioned in educational and beekeeping convention promotional stops. The Queen and Princess gave educational presentations in Montana, Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia, Mississippi, Wisconsin, Texas and Washington throughout October.  They also began their visits to state beekeeping conventions with stops in Montana, Washington and Mississippi.  These three state organizations coupled the Queen and Princess's visits to the state meeting with educational and other appearances in the local community.  Consider having the American Honey Queen or Princess visit your state meeting to update your group on the program's promotional reach and to discuss how you can incorporate a Honey Queen visit as part of your fairs, festivals and farmers' markets!  While she's there, have her visit local schools, libraries, Boys and Girls Clubs, civic organizations, and the media to promote your organization's event and the industry.  The autumn months are a great time to discuss the many uses for recently harvested honey!

While the year is quickly coming to a close, Queen Teresa and Princess Allison will continue to be busy with promotions for the ABF through December.  Please follow their travels on Facebook (American Honey Queen Program), their blog www.buzzingacrossamerica.com, and through the ABF Newsletter.

Bee Successful: The Buzz on Effective Marketing

by Tim Tucker, ABF Membership and Marketing Committee Member and ABF E-Buzz Editor

Bob and Jessica Harrison at the River Market in downtown Kansas City, Missouri

There's no doubt that in today's competitive world you have to learn to market your honey if you are going to succeed. It takes the skill of a good observer and a willingness to go a little farther in preparation than your competition to make sure that you get the sale.  This is what will determine if you are able to retail to the public, sell your honey and make your time pay.

Make sure that your space is neat and orderly and that you are always ready to greet customers with a friendly smile. From Wal-Mart to Casey's Convenience Stores, I am constantly being greeted when I enter the store. Companies have learned that it's important to greet people and recognize they are important. There's no doubt it gets tiring, but you have to always make every customer feel like they are your best and most-valued patron. Bob, Liz and Jessica Harrison do a great job of this!

Always be sure to price everything clearly and plainly in writing, such that is legible and leaves no doubt as to its intent. Be consistent with your prices and don't change just because your neighbor has a lower price or a "bargain table." Customers will look for you and seek you out if you treat them fairly and with respect.

Always keep your table restocked and with lots of different options for people to consider and be involved in when making a choice. It's not whether they are going to buy something from you, it's what size or do I need some beeswax or pollen, as well, in addition to that honey bear.

Brewin' with Barack

by Eugene Makovec, ABF Member

As it turns out, Barack Obama and do I have some things in common.

A few years ago I decided I could not live without the goodness of home-grown honey. So, I got some bees and made my own. Last year, when the new prez moved into the White House, one of the first things he and the first lady, Michelle, did was plunk down a hive of bees on the lawn. (Evidently, their neighbors are a bit more open-minded than mine about stinging insects.)

Since one of my other favorite things is beer, it occurred to me this past summer that it would be nice to make that for myself, too. So, I combined these two favorite things into a tasty honey wheat ale. Then, last month, to my great surprise, I heard on National Public Radio that none other than the President of the United States is serving homemade honey wheat ale to his house guests! And, he's been doing so since early this year, rolling out the first batch at his Super Bowl party in February. (I should have known of this sooner, but I was not invited to said party, probably because that Bears fan did not want this Packers fan whooping it up with every Green Bay score.)

To the Obamas' credit, they paid for their brewing supplies themselves, though reportedly it is the White House kitchen staff doing the actual brewing. I guess that last part is understandable given the demands of his job, though if I had unlimited staff at my beck and call, I'd do the brewing myself and let the help handle more mundane tasks, like tinkering with the economy and bombing two-bit dictators.

Two weeks ago I started my second brew. It's the same basic recipe as before, but this time I'm adding blueberries. Shhhh, don't tell the President!

Example of Products of the Hive

Moments in Beekeeping Photo Contest: Call for Submissions

There are four categories for entries in the photo contest:

  • Bees at Work — This will involve a great picture of a honey bee on a flower in the process of gathering nectar or pollen. It would also entail pictures of bees in the hive performing functions such as cooling, transfer of nectar or attending the queen. It could also be great frames of colorful pollen or brood.
  • Kids and Bees — This will include children working bees or in the classroom demonstrating any educational activities involving the honey bee. Costumes and recreations of bee hives are great subjects.
  • Products of the Hive — This category will show off great displays of honey, pollen or beeswax. It could be food made with honey or demonstrations of the different color of varietals. It could involve vehicles used to deliver honey or honey gift baskets.
    Show how you use and market the wonderful products of the hive.
  • Landscapes and Bees — Show us your favorite yard of bees and how beautiful the surrounding landscape is at your apiary sites.
Example of Landscapes and Bees

Rules for photo contest are as follows:

  • Photo will be limited to 2 MB or under in size and will be displayed in a 1500 x 1200 pixel format.
  • Entrants will submit a release form for each photo stating the originality of the photo and possession of submission.
    Release forms will be sent via e-mail upon photo submission.
  • Photos and release forms must be submitted to the ABF via e-mail by November 30, 2011, for final judging. Please send photo to Robin Dahlen, ABF executive director, at robindahlen@abfnet.org.

The winner of each category will be given a prize and one grand prize winner will receive a Master Beekeepers Suit from Brushy Mountain Bee Farm.

Buzzmakers: Latest and Greatest Beekeeping Industry News

  • The Empire State Honey Producers Association has received a federal grant to help New York beekeepers to stop the loss of honey bee colonies in the State. The three-year, $59,000 grant will train beekeepers to not only prevent, diagnose and treat honey bee maladies, but give them the tools to teach other, beginning beekeepers to recognize bee diseases. Discover more at http://blog.syracuse.com/farms/2011/10/new_york_state_honey_producers.html.
  • A federal court recently blocked the U.S. government's plans to sue a German food importer's American subsidiary for allegedly avoiding $80 million in customs duties on illegally imported Chinese honey. A federal grand jury last year indicted Alfred L. Wolff, Inc., and its subsidiaries in the U.S., Germany, China and Hong Kong, charging they dodged the customs duties on honey imported from China between 2002 and 2009. It was alleged Wolff labeled the honey as originating in other countries to avoid paying anti-dumping duties. More details can be found at http://home.ezezine.com/1636/1636-2011.
  • The National Honey Board has developed vehicle or sign decals to help promote honey and spread the message that honey is just one ingredient, the way nature intended.  Beekeepers, packers and other honey industry members may receive up to six of these decals for FREE. The decals are available in two sizes: the smaller decal is 14.5" tall x 15" wide; and the larger decal is 22" x 24". Visit http://www.honey.com to learn more and place an order.
  • Grande Prairie Regional College will establish the National Bee Diagnostic Centre, thanks to a $1.1-million federal grant from the city of Ottawa in Ontario, Canada. The money will pay for capital expenses, including a mobile trailer and diagnostic equipment. The centre will complement the college's beekeeper-technician program.  Read the full story at http://www.edmontonjournal.com/health/Ottawa+funds+national+centre+Grande+Prairie/5553115/story.html.
  • Derma Sciences, Inc., a specialty medical device and pharmaceutical company focused on advanced wound care, recently announced that it has completed a comprehensive Heads of Agreement with Comvita New Zealand Ltd. of Paengaroa, New Zealand, covering the worldwide licensing rights for MEDIHONEY professional wound care and skin care products. Learn more at http://www.ir.dermasciences.com/profiles/investor/ResLibraryView.asp?BzID=1109&ResLibraryID=35161&Category=440.

ABF Welcomes New Members — September 2011

  • Anne-Marie Anderson, Georgia
  • Andrzej Burak, Illinois
  • Raymond Hopper, Nevada
  • Darien Kruss, Illinois
  • Robert Lamothe, Maryland
  • Billie Lee, Oklahoma
  • Kimberly Marlowe, Michigan
  • Mark Schifrin, Maryland
  • Theodore Schweitzer, Nevada
  • Jerry Shue, Utah
  • Cathie Skove, New Jersey
  • Frank Walker, Virginia

Recipe of the Month: Cereal Nut Energy Bars

These easy-to-fix energy bars will be a wonderful afternoon treat to help get you through until supper time!

Photo courtesy of photosearch.com


  • 3 1/2 cups old fashioned or quick cooking oats
  • 3/4 cup raisins
  • 1 cup sunflower seeds
  • 1/2 cup toasted sesame seeds
  • 1/2 cup wheat germ
  • 1/2 cup oat bran
  • 3 tablespoons flax seeds
  • 2 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 1/2 cups creamy peanut butter
  • 1 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup melted butter
  • 8 ounces semisweet chocolate chips, melted


  • Preheat an oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Line a 9x13 inch pan with aluminum foil.
  • Combine the oatmeal, raisins, sunflower seeds, wheat germ, oat bran, flax seeds, cinnamon and salt in the bowl of a mixer. Mix in peanut butter, honey, vanilla and melted butter. Press mixture evenly into prepared pan.
  • Bake in the preheated oven for 12-15 minutes. Spread the melted chocolate chips over top. Refrigerate until hard, about 30 minutes. Cut into bars.