The Plan is looking very sweet – honey will be available at the Friday market.

By Pepper Parr

BURLINGTON, ON  July 11, 2012   The first harvest is ready!!!  The jars have been readied, the tags are printed and the product is now on sale.  There will be between 60 and 70 lbs.  available.  It will be on sale at the new farmer’s market held every Friday from 11 – 2 on John Street just north of James Street back in behind Centro Gardens.

Of course there is more than just natural honey on sale but let’s let Russell Gibbs tell the story about the honey; it’s quite a tale.

Russell Gibbs – a beekeeper and a graphic designer – with a sweet tooth.

“This harvest is the first bloom of the 2012 season, our bees forage on a variety of plants and this early summer harvest is full-bodied and rich – some of the best honey I’ve had in a while if I do say so myself. It’s a true Southern Ontario wildflower honey. It’s also packaged quite beautifully

The real thing – from the hive to you in a re-usable Mason jar.

Honey is available now through the beekeeper (me) for $10 per 500 g jar. We have 60 jars and this will be available until it’s sold out. There will also be a late summer harvest which will be available in September 2012.

A couple of notes about our honey;

– Our honey is as “straight from the hive” as it gets. We extract the frames, filter, then bottle it.

– All real honey will crystallize over time, if that happens just place the jar in warm water (without the lid) until it softens up – don’t boil or put it in the microwave.

– Our honey is more expensive than others, why? For starters its not mass produced. We’re a small batch/small operation and not only are we focused on the quality of the product we also believe in quality packaging.”

Russell Gibbs comes from a long line of bee keepers. The family “beeyard” around 1950.

Gibbs Honey has been around since the 40′s, maybe even before the 40′s? in various iterations and incarnations.  The first beekeeper in my family was my great grandfather Albert Gibbs. He kept a couple of colonies on the farm, which is what most farmers did back then. When my grandfather Michael took over the farm he decided to expand the operation and sell honey. He kept close to 100 hives, that number went up and down throughout his career as a hobbyist beekeeper. My uncles eventually took it over from him and grew it into a commercial operation, they own and operate Gibbs Honey in Dalkeith, Ontario on the family farm. My cousin Jason is researching Sweat bees with Cornell University, last year he discovered 19 new species.

Gibbs Honey in Dundas, Ontario is operated by Russell Gibbs, a 4th generation beekeeper and graphic designer. Russell got into beekeeping, while searching for a deeper connection to his family history and nature. It all started when his Dad gave him his old beekeeping veil and a copy of “The Hive and the Honey Bee” by L.L. Langstroth. After reading lots of other books, taking courses and finding a beekeeping mentor he decided to go out on his own. Russell kept two hives in 2011 and is expanding to 8 for the 2012 season.


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