Flowers and honey – a gourmet combination
More about busy bees, sweet honey, transhumance in bee-keeping, divine tears or bees in the tummy? Click on our headlines.
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Fleurop flowers & high-quality honey from Bee-Family
Loving add-in gifts that complement flowers: that's what our customers asked for. We are therefore pleased to present our honey products from Bee-Family. They are of high quality, absolutely delicious, elegantly packaged and also help in the war against bee death.
Would you like to taste this excellent honey yourself, or make a gift of it? On request, we will deliver your flowers together with tempting honey. You have the choice of two different gifts:
- A 350 g jar of certified Swiss blossom honey in an elegant gift box.
- Six 70 g pots with six different varieties of honey in an elegant gift box. The jars contain: sunflower honey, Swiss blossom honey, hawthorn honey, coriander honey, Swiss forest honey and wild silk honey.
Bee-Family stands for the ethical treatment of nature and of food produced from natural sources. The company actively champions the keeping and preservation of healthy bee breeds in unspoilt, natural regions. All the varieties of honey are of impressively high quality, laboratory tested and guaranteed residue-free.
You‘ll find more product information HERE.
Behind "Bee-Family" is a bee-keeper passionate about her work
The founder of Bee-Family AG is enthusiastic bee-keeper Marisa Bühler. She grew up on Lake Constance and learned to love bee-keeping and Carnica bees as a child at her grandfather‘s home in Carinthia. It seems to have made a lasting impression. The childhood memories returned to her later. She learned the art of bee-keeping from the ground up and built an apiary in Uzwil. It grew into a major passion. As bee death arose, the realisation also grew that talking was not enough and that action was needed. This was how Bee-Family came to be founded. The company champions the protection and preservation of the honey bee by setting up new bee colonies at selected locations. Sustainable, chemical-free bee-keeping, giving the bees the opportunity to make their honey as nature intended, is important here. Pure, clear, healthy – with plenty of trace elements, vitamins and minerals.
Strong bee colonies and good relationships with bee-keepers who work in accordance with Bee-Family’s criteria guarantee high quality. Bee-Family inspects its partners regularly and takes samples from every honey harvest. The selected batches of honey are sealed, and the samples are tested by recognised institutes such as Agroscope in Liebefeld (CH) for impurities and residues. These expensive analyses are the guarantee of Bee-Family's high quality standards.
Would you like to try flowers and blossom honey? The shop is HERE.
Honey bees have been around for more than 100 million years
Bees arrived on our planet long before humans. The oldest fossil findings show that honey bees were around 100 million years ago. Man came on the scene around 2 million years ago. However, it was a long time before he discovered the honey made by wild bees. As cave paintings of “honey hunters” show, he used it as food in the Stone Age, but also as bait when hunting bears. All those years ago, he already knew that honey could be harvested many times in succession from a bee tribe if the nest and the brood are left unharmed. With this realisation came the development of the technique of blowing smoke into the combs of the bees’ nests so that the honey could be removed carefully. When men started to establish themselves in one place as farmers and settlers, they also started to keep and cultivate bees.
The idea of systematic bee-keeping then spread through trade relationships and cultural contacts, particularly in the early high cultures of Mesopotamia and Egypt. In Egypt, it even enjoyed a golden age. Because of the very highly developed apiculture and wealth of archaeological evidence, scientists actually believed for many years that the earliest roots of domestic bee-keeping were in Egypt. However, archaeological excavations in Central Asia prove that it was present in that region much earlier.
Would you like to try flowers and blossom honey? You'll find our suggestions HERE.
Carnica bees are sweet-natured
The Bee-Family honey available from Fleurop comes from Carnica bees. They originated in Carinthia, or rather in Slovenia, which once belonged to Austria. For this reason, they are also known as Carinthian bees. The striking characteristics of the Carnica bee mean it is a good honey bee with a great love of cleanliness. It is robust and climate resistant. Carnica bees also have the reputation of being sweet-natured. This, in turn, means that everybody likes them. Because however much we love honey and bees, none of us love bee stings – bees aren‘t fond of them either!
You‘ll find our honey from the sweet-natured Carnica bees HERE.
Honey: likes it cool and dark
Ideally, honey should be stored where it is cool and dark and in a dry place free of odours, because otherwise the enzymes and flavours will not be preserved. That’s why high-quality Bee-Family honey is stored in impressive purple jars, as an excellent protection from light. This offers the optimum protection from changes, and the honey can easily be kept for years without losing its healthy qualities.
Honey is best for your health when enjoyed cool. When it is heated to more than 40 degrees Celsius, important enzymes are lost, and in a microwave oven the enzyme content drops to zero within seconds. For this reason, honey should never be boiled. However, warming it briefly when sweetening hot or warm drinks is fine, because drinks cool relatively quickly when consumed. Tip: crystallised honey will be restored to its liquid form when warmed gently in a water bath.
Would you like to try flowers and blossom honey? You‘ll find our suggestions HERE
Transhumance in Ancient Egypt
Around 4000 BC, the Ancient Egyptians realised that honey production and fruit yields could be improved by locating bee colonies in areas with intensive agriculture. However, the idea of “transhumance”, or moving the bees from place to place, was even more sophisticated. In Lower Egypt, entire bee colonies were loaded onto ships in the springtime and transported along the Nile to Upper Egypt. The bees produced large quantities of honey en route and also pollinated cultivated plants along the way. Despite all these efforts, however, the time soon came when the demand for honey could no longer be covered by the domestic market and honey had to be imported. By this time, honey not only played an important role as a sacrificial offering, but also in medical remedies, cosmetic products and for sweetening baked goods and wine. It had a price tag to match. In those days, a pot of honey is said to have been equivalent in value to a donkey or a cow. And the theft of honey was punishable by death.
You’ll find our first-class Bee-Family honey HERE.
Bees are the tears of the sun god Ra
In Egypt, honey was deemed to be “food of the gods”, a “source of immortality” and “sustenance on the journey to the next world”. It was sacrificed to the gods, used for embalming rituals and placed with the dead in graves and pyramids. Of course, it was reserved solely for Pharaohs and influential people. In Lower Egypt, the sign of the bee actually became symbolic of the Pharaohs’ power. The hieroglyphic symbol for “rule” or “dominion” was the queen bee, while subordinates were represented as worker bees. Around 3000 BC, the bee became the most important hieroglyph of them all when Upper and Lower Egypt were united. The content of a papyrus scroll from the 12th century BC is intriguing. It explains that bees were created by the tears of the sun god Ra, which fell upon the earth and were transformed into the little creatures. They then went on to build nests for themselves and penetrate the flowers. That was how wax and honey came into being. Nice story, isn’t it?
You’ll find our divine blossom honey HERE.
Bee homes: from tree trunks to “bees in the tummy”
Bees originally lived in natural hollows in woodland trees. Then man started to provide them with hollowed-out tree trunks or – in Africa – clay pipes as nesting sites. Later on, hollow tree trunks were imitated in Western Europe by setting up so-called “log hives”. These were pieces of trunk that had been hollowed out. They had the advantage of being portable. Naturally, they were only used where there was woodland. In other areas, bees were provided with accommodation (hives or skeps) made of rods or straw. Special designs were also developed, such as hives that imitated human figures. These were carved and painted and were more like wooden statues than beehives. The bees’ fertility was highlighted figuratively by the fact that the entrance holes in these hives were often around the area of the genitals. However, the disadvantage of all these constructions was that part of the comb was cut out and therefore destroyed when the honey was harvested. They were known as fixed-frame or fixed comb hives. Nowadays, the general preference is for mobile-frame or mobile comb hives, in which the comb is set in a movable frame. This type has been common since the 19th century, a period which produced many discoveries and developments. Including, for example, the invention of the honey extractor, which allows the combs to be re-used after the honey is harvested so that the bees have to devote less energy to re-building combs.
You‘ll find our honey produced with passion and love HERE.
The bee colony: a cleverly devised state
A bee colony is a complex community of around 40,000 bees in which every bee has its own very specific role. The queen, for example, is the head of state. She is larger than any of the others and is responsible for reproduction. She has a sting, but before the mating flight she only uses it to kill rivals. The young queen emerges from the hive to mate at the age of one to two weeks. She secretes the drones‘ semen in her spermatheca (also known as the receptaculum seminis). These stores are sufficient for her entire life of up to four years. Meanwhile, the workers look after the welfare of the queen and her progeny. They help to extend the beehive, guard it and search for nectar and honeydew. Workers are always in action wherever they benefit the colony most, then they die. During the summer, they live for 4 to 8 weeks. In winter, they survive for up to six months because they don‘t leave the hive and do significantly less work. All bees are female apart from the drones, which come from the queen‘s unfertilised eggs. Their task is to mate with the queen, and then to die immediately. Drones are not needed during the winter, so those that have not mated with the queen are driven out of the hive, normally around midsummer.
Would you like to try flowers and blossom honey? You‘ll find our inspirations HERE.
Join the war on bee death
It is important to know that 35% of global food production depends on pollinating insects. That includes all types of fruit. But around 4000 varieties of vegetables grown in Europe also owe their existence entirely to busy insects. This demonstrates how important it is for bees to survive. We should therefore do everything in our power to ensure that they find blossoms to give them a continuous supply of food from spring to autumn. This will only happen if we opt to grow more flowering plants on the balcony or patio or in the garden. It doesn’t have to be box or thuja every time. Let’s remember all the robust, native flowering shrubs such as white or pink hawthorn and blackthorn, not to mention Amelanchier (serviceberry), or dog roses, marguerites, sunflowers, lavender, rosemary, sage and other herbs. And if you would like take concrete action against bee death, you can also become a sponsor with Bee-Family.
For around ten years now, notable numbers of bee colonies have been dying all over the world. Last year, experts reported that around 100,000 colonies had perished in the past winter in Switzerland alone. What was the reason? On the one hand, bee death has been connected in the past with parasitic infestations. On the other, increasingly sterile gardens that no longer contain flowers or flowering grasses, shrubs and trees are proving fatal to bees.
Bee-Family‘s sponsorships are to be found HERE.
You’ll find our suggestions on flowers & blossom honey HERE.