Average honey production per beehive on the decline, BBKA survey reveals

A beekeeper uncapping honey. Picture: ADOPT A BEEHIVE

A beekeeper uncapping honey. Picture: ADOPT A BEEHIVE - Credit: Archant

An annual honey survey has revealed that average production is on the decline.

A beekeeper checking bees. Picture: ADOPT A BEEHIVE

A beekeeper checking bees. Picture: ADOPT A BEEHIVE - Credit: Archant

The British Beekeepers Association’s (BBKA) study showed the average beekeeper in England produced 23.8lb (11.8kg) of honey this year – a decrease of 2.3lb over last year’s crop.

The two most productive regions in England continue to be the south east, producing 30.1lb of honey and the east with 29.3lb of honey per hive.

Those areas which suffered a particularly wet summer, Wales and the south west, both saw their honey crop drop to 18lb per hive.

Most of Britain’s beekeeping is carried out by amateur beekeepers, whereas in much of Europe it is carried out by bee farmers. Neither produces enough honey to meet demand.

“A honey crop of 50lb to 100lb was typical when I started beekeeping in the 1950s,” said John Hobrough who was recently awarded his BBKA certificate for 60 years of beekeeping.