By Ian Mackley
Yet another successful annual Honey Show was held at Kinellar Hall on 20 October. The Schedule was significantly revised for this year, removing Classes where there had been only few or no entries in recent years in order to make the Show more manageable. Thirty-nine people submitted 169 entries in total. 2018 has been a good year for spring and summer honey but very poor for heather honey and this was reflected in the entries: 20 each in the light and soft-set classes, but only a handful of heather honey entries.
The Show was judged by Bron and David Wright from Edinburgh. Bron is the immediate Past President of the SBA and a National Honey Show judge. The Industrial entries were judged by Margaret Grant, a very skilled baker who has been judging our Industrial Section of the Show for the past four years.
Prior to the prize-giving, Bron said a few words about the Show, noting in particular that she felt some of the best entries were of national standard and encouraging people to submit entries for instance at the Highland, Scottish Honey and the National Shows. By way of example, Jenny’s stained glass honeycomb and bee exhibit won Best in Show.
Also, before Prize-Giving, Sandy Gordon was formally invited to become the Association’s next President. Sandy graciously accepted and did what he has been doing for decades, offering his beekeeping help to anyone who needed it.
David gave a short and insightful talk on how honey exhibits are judged. Clearly time does not permit all exhibits to be tasted. The judges first look for ‘elimination’ faults, for example failing to meet the Schedule (e.g. wrong type of jar), or in the wrong Class (e.g. medium honey entered in the light Class). They then screen for externally visible ‘downgrade’ faults, for instance imperfect lids, chipped jars, air bubbles or signs of granulation in liquid honey. At this point the original say 20 entries will have been reduced to only six or eight jars which are actually opened. The visible surface of the honey is then scrutinised for further ‘downgrade’ faults such as impurities, scum etc. The honey might also be tested for water content at this point. Finally, the few exhibits which have got this far are assessed for aroma and taste then ranked accordingly. David’s tip for success is to pay attention to detail – all the judging factors to the point where the jar is opened are completely within the control of the beekeeper – to aim to get your entries to the standard where they are at least tasted in the first place, and prizes will follow.
Lots of thanks are due to the Co-Conveners, Alison Goss and Jenny Lewis, to Stewards and other helpers, Donald, Malcolm, Karl, Joan, Naomi and Steve, and of course to Margaret and Moira for a splendid tea.
Trophies and Awards
The Thorne Trophy – Most points in the show – Joan Gilbert-Stevens
The A.S.C.D. Trophy – Best exhibit in the show – Jenny Lewis
The John Cooper Cup – Best exhibit of cut comb honey – Lindsay Macauley
The President’s Trophy – (This year) Best lemon honey cake – Anne Daniels
The Bill MacKenzie Quaich – Best exhibit in liquid ling heather – Hugh Donohoe
The Henry Simpson Trophy – Best exhibit in medium/dark honey – Ken Gow
The Anne C. Beddie Trophy – Best exhibit in the Beeswax Class – Rhian & Crawford Anderson
MTM Construction Shield – Best exhibit in light honey – Jamie Evans
The Captain Manson Trophy – Most points in the Industrial Class – Rosie Waites
The David Pert Memorial Prize – Best exhibit in the handicraft class – Lindsey Macauley
S. C. Rae Memorial Trophy – Best frame – Hugh Donohoe
John D. Walker Memorial Trophy – Best exhibit of soft set honey – Witek Mojsiewicz
Jim Tocher Trophy – Most points in the Novice Class – Geoff Holtom
ADBKA Shield – Best exhibit in the Junior Class – Sophie Breeman