I come from the Caucasus region of southern Russia – from the resort town of Sochi which has a sub-tropical climate and is not like the frozen north that people associate with Russia. In the Caucasus region beekeeping is very popular and there are many large-scale bee-farms where they harvest honey and breed bees for export around the world. My parents are honey lovers and still buy it in 3 kg jars, which is a traditional container in Russia for many products. In recent years I have taken Aberdeenshire heather-honey to my parents and other family members in Sochi which they enjoyed. On one trip to Sochi, I carried 15 kg of honey to the great shock and amusement of customs officers. [Read more about the trip in the January 2018 Newsletter.]
My beekeeping career started about six years ago with my husband. We now manage about fifty colonies based in Hazlehead park and on Dunecht estates. This year we intend to scale back to about twenty or thirty colonies to ease the workload.
We support the local events that are organised by Aberdeen City Council and were invited to participate in the 2017 Aberdeen Fine Food Xmas market which was open to local food and drink producers for the first time. In addition I was invited to present to the judges of this year’s Britain in Bloom competition.
We also exhibit our bees to school children at events within Hazlehead park and Duthie park and were invited to participate at a school’s Open Day at Dunecht estate. We support local shows including Echt show and Echt RHS flower-show and we have participated in Environment day within Duthie park since its inception.
Our association held its first honey-show at the RHS flower-show at Duthie park in 1910 and we are proud to have continued to support this event for the last few years.