Live bee exports all the buzz
Bathurst Agricultural Research Station conference room was full -with standing room only - for an information day about the export of live package bees.
More than 100 people from all across Australia attended, to hear the three major Australian producers of export package bees, Warren Taylor, Grant Lockwood and Terry Brown.
One of the historical difficulties in gaining entry to the export package bee business has been the lack of knowledge among the wider beekeeping industry about how it’s done.
“With all the main players present at the workshop, all the beekeeper participants heard from the experts,” NSW Department of Primary Industries’ (DPI) bee expert and one of the organisers, Dr Doug Somerville, said.
“Interested beekeepers should now be well equipped to include the export of package bees in their business mix.”
The demand for Australian bees in the US from December to February each year is increasing; last summer, Australian beekeepers exported more than 30,000 packages.
The main limiting factor to the expansion of the export industry is the amount of freight space on the airlines flying directly to the US.
Key speakers also came from the Australian Quarantine Inspection Service, Biosecurity Australia, Austrade and NSW DPI.
Industry presenters included aerospace engineers and cabinet makers responsible for cage designs and construction, United Airlines and freight forwarding agents.
Westpac Bank gave a summary about doing business overseas.
“We also had a late entry, with Danny Weaver from Bear-tooth Apiaries in the US flying in especially from California,” Dr Somerville said.
NSW DPI apiary officer at Bathurst Research Station, Nick Annand, and receptionist, Jane Hogan, were key contributors to the event’s success.
Contact Dr Doug Somerville, (02) 4828 6619, Goulburn, Nick Annand, Bathurst, (02) 6330 1210.