Beekeeping and Honey

The long and warm summer days that are characteristic of Manitoba provide favourable conditions for the management of honey bees for pollination and honey production. Each year Manitoba beekeepers produce in excess of 6,000 metric tonnes of high quality honey. Most of this honey is sold to other regions of Canada, the United States and numerous overseas markets. In fact of the honey produced in Manitoba 80% is exported all over the world.

Honey is produced by about 650 Manitoba beekeepers, of which 30% are considered commercial with 50 or more colonies or hives. One colony of 40,000 to 60,000 bees produces, on average, 77 kilograms (170 pounds) of honey in a six-week period between the end of June and the middle of August.
Beekeepers move their colonies to fields of flowering crops such as canola, buckwheat, clover and alfalfa. Once bees begin to gather from one type of crop they generally stay there for the season. Some crops give a distinctive flavour to the honey produced from them. High quality beeswax and beeswax products are also produced for both wholesale and retail markets.