As you know, Honeydew and I are in Galveston at the 2011 North American Beekeeping Conference, a joint gathering of this country’s two biggest beekeeping associations, the American Beekeeping Federation and the American Honey Producers Association, along with the Canadian and Mexican beekeeping councils.  Most American beekeepers belong to either the AHPA or the ABF.

Honeydew and I are proud AHPA members, and last night, we attended the association’s annual banquet and auction, where we were thrilled to see around $30,000 raised in furtherance of the AHPA’s agenda, namely good honeybee research and some lobbying to keep foreign honey that ain’t actually honey, or ain’t produced in an ethical manner, off the grocery store shelves.  At the auction, we were also tickled to see our water white honey sell for $150 per pound and our gift baskets for $350 each!

It was an evening to reminisce, too, and many war stories were traded, old friendships rekindled, and hard work honored.  It brought a tear to my eye to watch our dear friend Jackie Park-Burris present the AHPA’s award to her first cousin, and Honeydew’s mentor, the inimitable Steve Park, for his many years of dedication and service to the beekeeping industry.

It was also lovely to see Jack and Betty Thomas of Mann Lake be recognized for their contributions to and support of the beekeeping industry over the last 25 years or so.

I think they should be recognized for the truffles they give out, too.  It’ll really likes ’em.

And so begins 2011 for us beekeepers.  It’s time to say goodbye to Texas and hello to California, to put away our convention suits and find our bee suits, to change the oil in the forklifts and the flatbeds: pollination season is near.  Best wishes to all the AHPA members in the year ahead.

2011.  Glacier County Honey Co.  All Rights Reserved.