How Has Beekeeping And Honey Harvesting Changed Over Time?

It is no secret that honey is one of the most versatile sweeteners in the world. An important part of many cultures’ diets, as it provides an excellent natural sugar substitute for a diabetic person or for those looking to avoid processed sugar. Bees are also incredibly important for our ecosystem, and because of this, they should be cared about responsibly by their keepers. It is interesting to see how beekeeping has evolved and how the bee populations have changed with it. Here are some interesting facts about how beekeeping and honey harvesting has changed over time:

1. Changes in Bee Populations

Bees are like a big biological clock for the environment. When the numbers of bees decrease, so does the honey harvest, and vice versa. Luckily, there are currently measures to mitigate the damage that bee colonies are receiving. Some of these measures include:

  • Making sure the bees do not  have access to too many pesticides
  • Decreasing the amount of pesticides used for spraying of crops
  • Educating farmers on how to manage bees (these crops are an important source of pollen and nectar for the bees)
  • Communicating to the public how to act in a bee-friendly manner

2. The Evolution of Beekeeping

Beekeeping has a long history. Honey has been around for thousands of years, and probably existed before man, although we are not sure about this. Back in the day, the consumption of honey was practiced by many cultures. Eventually, bees got way too many and were introduced to hives to regulate the population. As honey production and bee population decreased, beekeepers switched from hives to boxes for better management of the bees. Other hives would be split, and a key on the side of the hive could be used to extract the honey without opening the door, also known as a flow hive! Honey farming became popular in the 1700s, and it has been steadily growing since then.

3. How Honey Harvesting Has Changed Over Time

Keeping bees has been around for more than 10,000 years. Historically, beekeepers needed to harvest honey from hives around the same time every year to harvest it for use throughout the year. Nowadays, beekeepers harvest honey about every three times a year, with some species of honey, like that from the Africanized honeybees, requiring more frequent collection. In Uganda however, Nahl apiculture is one of, if not the only beekeeping organization that harvests frequently.

Beekeeping really took off when people began to grow crops that required pollination. Without bees, we wouldn’t have any fruits or vegetables that we love to eat. For example, honeybees are responsible for pollinating around 75% of all the food that we eat. Additionally, as honeybees outcompete wild bees for nectar resources, they impact wild food populations less. If you are involved in the agricultural sector, consider keeping just a single beehive and see the difference in crop yield!

Final Thought

Our goal is to create modern beekeeping and honey harvesting techniques that take place in the modern world. Fortunately, through this article, we’ve given you some valuable information on beekeeping, honey harvesting, and current beekeeping practices that can help you, the next beekeepers, and what you can do to help out the bee population!

Share this article to help raise awareness of how beekeeping and honey harvest has changed over time.