Local beekeepers educate fairgoers on the importance of the honeybee

Local beekeepers educate fairgoers on the importance of the honeybee

Members of the Central Washington Beekeepers Association have been presenting all about the importance of the honeybee and its relationship with man at the State Fair this week.

The local beekeepers get together to learn about best beekeeping practices, teach new beekeepers how to be successful in the field and reach out to the non-beekeeping public. They promote education about just how important the honeybee is.

Clifford Peterson with the Beekeeper Association said it’s been estimated that one out of every three bites of the American diet is directly dependent on honeybee pollination.

“Without the honeybee, we wouldn’t be here at the fair because the ag building would be essentially empty,” said Peterson.

He said one study shows that 80 percent of the world’s top 100 food crops are insect pollinated.

“Not only with honeybee pollination, from the honeybee, we also get honey and beeswax,” said Peterson. “And literally everything that is in the beehive is beneficial to man.”

Each day of the fair, they offer several presentations in the Agriculture Building, including a live honey extracting demonstration where they take the honey out of the frame and explain how it gets from the flower to your breakfast table.

They also have an ‘Our friend the honeybee’ presentation, which is an overview of the importance of the honeybee. They have a cooking with honey presentation as well where they talk about the health benefits of honey, and how you can sub it in for sugar in recipes.

“It’s really amazing that man has recognized how beneficial the honeybee is, and we’ve had a relationship since the dawn of time, before recorded history,” said Peterson. “And yet most people have such a little understanding of why we have bees and why we need bees and why they are important.”