Saturday, September 13, 2014

Brushy Mountain's Question of the Month: September

This has been one of the best honey flows in the past couple of years. Everyone who we have spoken with has been able to extracted at least one super of honey. In the North Carolina region, many beekeepers have commented that they were able to harvest a sourwood crop. Believe it or not, too much honey can be a problem. What is the best way to store it? What works best when labeling and marketing honey?

What are you going to do with all the excess honey now that you have finished extracting and bottling? Of course you will want to keep some for yourself but how should you sell the rest? The presentation of your honey can generate a demand to help you avoid a surplus. Whether you sell your honey or give it as a gift, presentation is important.
  • The Right Jar. There are many varieties of jars and everyone will target a specific audience. ClassicMuth and Hexagonal are elegant glass jars that will increase the value of the honey. The Plastic Classic and Flat Panel Bears are more commonly known and tend to be more cost efficient. Consider that the jar is not only for containing your honey but also for display. Ensure it is clean and clearly shows your honey. An embossed design will help your jars stand out from competitors. Check out our newEmbossed Hourglass Jars for a unique design.

  • The Right Size and Top. Not everyone wants to buy 2lbs. of honey that they have not had before. The 2 oz Mini Bear is a good size sampler that sells great and if they like it enough, they will be back for more! Offer more sizes (1lb, 12oz, 8oz…) so your customers can choose how much they want. Would you prefer a flip top style lid or ahi-flow spout cap when dispensing your honey? Would your customers enjoy the same as you? This may be a test year so that you can better understand what your customers would like next year.

  • Label It. When you’re not there to talk about your honey, your label will be speaking for you. A label makes your jar look professional! Let your customers know it is pure and natural honey from your hives. Give them the contact information in case they want more next year. Use the correct size label for your jar. A panel bear label does not visually fit on to a 2 lb. jar. Add the tamper proof seal so your customers will be confident in the honey’s integrity.

    Most states have labeling requirements when selling honey. They require certain information pertaining to your honey. Honey is sold by weight not volume, such as fluid ounces.

  • Other Products. Don’t stop with just your honey. You will do better is you have a variety of products. Throw in those bars of soap you made with your soap making kit, light thecandle you made from the wax in your hive, open up the mead you made with your honey. Sell the fruits and vegetables your bees helped pollinate. Offer them more than honey and provide the story behind it!
What should you do if you did not sell all your honey? Will it go bad before next year? Storing honey is easy. Store it at room temperature, out of direct sunlight, and in a tightly sealed container. Wipe off any drips or leaks that will attract insects before storing the honey. Do not fret if you return later to find your honey is cloudy. Honey is not a perishable item but it will crystallize. Read Back to the Basics to better understand crystallization.

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