Thursday, November 18, 2010

Tiggers Don't Like Honey

Oh, but people do.  As a post-script to the bee extravaganza, I forgot to suggest that one should seek local honey supplies.  In the past, apiaries were abundant in the US, especially in rural areas, those numbers have declined rapidly over the last 100 years.  As you can probably guess, commercial apiaries have taken over the honey market, thus discouraging any incentive to re-populate the native bee populations.  In buying local honey, you are not only helping out the bee population, you are getting a unique product.  Honey is a product of local plants, and there are as many different types of honey as the diversity of habitats and seasons allow. 
            Here is a list of local honey pots for honey fiends.  One can usually find local honey at farmers’ markets across the country, but due to seasonal closings, that may be difficult at this time of year.  Luckily, honey keeps almost forever, and supplies are steady year-round. (Archaeologists have found honey samples in Egyptian gravesites. Apparently, it was still good.)  Save local honey for recipes that really need a pronounced honey taste.  You can use the plastic bear for other things.

Local Honey Resources
I have listed here a list of resources for local honey addicts in major US cities.  But if you can’t find a major metropolitan area, check out Chowhound. If you ask the discussion boards about local honey, their readers usually can direct you to the nearest source.  Also, some people claim that local honey helps with seasonal allergies. I haven't tried it, but next time I go home, I will experiment (I only seem to get seasonal allergies in Chicago.  I think I am slightly allergic to my parents.)  If you want to go that route, it is crucial that you search for honey that comes from local flora.  Otherwise, your body won't build the specific antibodies for your particular allergens.


District of Columbia/Northern Virginia/Maryland
And a Washington Post article with some nice local honey links.  Click here.

Los Angeles (all run year-round)

New York City
Union Sq. Greenmarket (runs year-round)

San Francisco
Her Majesty’s Secret Beekeeper (3520 20th Street, Suite C San Francisco, CA)

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