Who doesn’t love honey!? This pure and natural gift from nature was perhaps the first sweetener known to man. In fact, until sugar became widely available in the sixteenth century, honey was the world’s principal sweetener, with ancient Greece and Sicily among the best-known historical centers of honey production.
Honey’s sweet goodness has been an icon of abundance for centuries. Many cultures consider honey sacred. Our own Ayurveda refers to it as the Nectar of the Gods, honoring this golden syrup as a key ingredient in the ancient formulation known as Panchamrita— The Five Nectars of Immortality. Honey’s healing qualities have been known to man centuries.
You probably know already that honey is created by industrious bees that tirelessly visit flower after flower, extracting their nectar to prepare this natural sweetener that’s deposited in their hives.
Bees are some of the hardest working creatures on the planet. Our lives – and the world as a whole – would be a much different place if bees didn’t exist. To illustrate this fact, consider these numbers: bees are responsible for pollinating about one-sixth of the flowering plant species worldwide and approximately 400 different agricultural types of plant.
Pollination – How it Works & Why it’s Important
What is pollination? Simply put, it is the transfer of pollen from the male part of the flower, the anther, to the stigma, which is the female part of the flower. Upon their union, the plant’s seed, nut, or fruit is then formed. Some plants rely on animals to assist with their pollination process, while others can pollinate themselves or rely on the wind to do it for them. Bees pollinate a third of everything we eat and play a vital role in sustaining the planet’s ecosystems.
This is the beauty of nature’s balance. The bees need the flowers for food, while the flower needs the bee to reproduce.
As the poet Kahlil Gibran beautifully put it: “To the bee, a flower is the fountain of life, and to the flower, the bee is a messenger of love.”
However, Bees are facing a global crisis. Many honey bee colonies are dying out and some species of bees are going extinct. This is primarily due to pesticides used in modern farming methods and parasites that reproduce in bee colonies.
In India, these little buzzing creatures are providing various rural communities with a livelihood. Drought and low crop yields have led to poor living conditions for many small scale Indian farmers. Beekeeping has come to the rescue by helping to increase farm income while saving threatened local bee populations at the same time. Beekeeping is also empowering rural women and forest dwelling tribal communities in India by providing them with a sustainable income source.
QNet is proud to launch Nutriplus Busy Bee Monofloral Honey for our customers in India. Busy Bee is sourced entirely from apiaries (a collection of hives or colonies of bees kept for their honey) and cooperatives that support the natural process of honey collection by promoting bee keeping in rural communities.
Busy Bee Monofloral Honey is available in three types:
- Jamun Honey from the forests in Eastern India
- Eucalyptus Honey from the Nilgiris
- Indian Laurel Honey from the Western Ghats
Monofloral honey, as the name suggests is derived predominantly from the nectar of a single flowering plant. You may be surprised to know that just like wine, honey has thousands of different varieties. Each type of monofloral honey is a natural reduction of the nectar of its corresponding flower or plant. Like wine, the differences are sometimes subtle and complex and sometimes obvious and surprising. This is what makes monofloral honey unique and special!
India’s single flora, region specific honeys have not yet reached the urban markets. Ironically, imported monofloral honey enjoys premium status in gourmet stores.
The three varieties of monofloral honey from QNet’s Busy Bee range are from apiaries migrated to the Western Ghats, the plains in Eastern India and the hills of Nilgiris forests.
Our supplier works with apiaries that also train rural farmers and tribal communities in these regions to decrease their dependence on forest resources. Although tribal communities are familiar with beekeeping, their conventional method does not guarantee adequate returns. A good number of honey bees are destroyed or killed during collection of honey and its by-products, and sometimes even cause forest fires due to the practice of smoking the hives.
The natural harvesting process used in the sourcing of Busy Bee honey ensures that no bees are harmed, while preserving the environment and supporting the local communities. Tribal women in particular have found beekeeping to be a great way of providing food security and adequate nutrition for their children.
Our supplier migrates over 200 beehives to farming communities that grow a wide range of crops. Farmers in these communities have witnessed a 20%-40% increase in productivity due to pollination since the hives were migrated to their fields.
QNet sources Busy Bee from a supplier that has a partnership with 15 beekeepers who comply with ‘Good Beekeeping Practices’. This means they follow the highest standards of hygiene of the apiary, health of worker bees, follow humane extraction processes and safe storage of honey.
So remember, when you buy a Busy Bee Honey product from QNet, you don’t just get a delicious jar of ethically sourced honey, you are contributing towards supporting rural communities and preserving the environment.