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Beekeeping is sweet in Kentucky

PRESTONSBURG, Ky. (WYMT) – Earlier this week, we showed you how beehives can be beneficial to farming in Southeastern Kentucky. Saturday afternoon, the first annual Beekeeping and Honey Exposition was held at Jenny Wiley State Resort Park.From beginner to advanced beekeeper, there was something for everyone Saturday afternoon at the expo. There were vendors selling beekeeping products, “How To” books, and honey. Trinity Shepherd, the Park Interpreter at Jenny Wiley, said that those things were great, but “more important than anything else, we have a lot of seminars going on about beekeeping education.” When it comes to beekeeping beginners, learning all there is to know is an important factor in successful and bountiful production.Beekeeping dropped off back in the 1980’s, but officials at the event believe that it is making a big comeback. “Our grandpas used to get wild bees out of the trees,” said President of the Floyd County B.A Steve Buckley. “Now, people are starting to see there’s value in honey bees,” he stated.Organizers say the average price for a one-pound jar of honey last year was around $7. Hives in Kentucky produce anywhere from 50-200 pounds of honey a season. As far as the risk, Buckley said, “For a beekeeper, the bee stings are just a part of it.” He concluded, “It’s not that big of a deal.” Ouch.The best way to start beekeeping is to join a Beekeepers Association, or B.A., to learn all there is from experienced keepers. For a full list of B.A organizations in the state of Kentucky, you can visit the Department of Agriculture’s website, www.kyagr.

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