An Interview with Black Bee Honey
Black Bee Honey is a single source, unpasteurised and natural honey. The founders chose the name as they support British black bees, and their keepers, by sourcing and celebrating only British honey. We caught up with Chris, one of the two founders, to hear all about their story.
How did you come to build your Black Bee Honey?
After keeping bees in our back garden, Paul and I realised how good honey was straight from the hive. We launched Black Bee Honey to share this discovery and provide quality, raw British honey as an alternative to all the bland imported honey that dominates the shelves.
Our core values are to be sustainable, ethical and have fun producing a quality product.
Can you tell us more about what sustainability and ethics mean to you at Black Bee Honey?
Beekeeping and British honey production has many environmental benefits and as far as farming practices go it’s one of the most sustainable. We’ve always put ethics and sustainability before profit so now we’re going through the process of becoming a B-corp. We’ve had to write a lot of documents and change a few things we do but hopefully it’s all worth it to demonstrate our values to consumers.
What is particularly hard behind the scenes that most people may not realise?
Producing and sourcing decent British honey is very expensive! It’s second in cost only to New Zealand’s Manuka and 5 times more expensive than Chinese honey which makes up around 90% of the honey we consume in the UK.
Also, getting a listing with a supermarket isn’t easy. There are a lot of hoops to jump through and the margins can be brutal. It seems like a lot of buyers and consumers prefer cheap commodities over quality, ethical products, so there's a big effort in convincing them otherwise!
And what is the best thing about starting your own brand?
Being my own boss!
I’ve also recently become a dad so having some flexibility is really helping with the sleepless nights!
Other than your own (obviously), what is your favourite food or drink brand?
Personally I love Karma Drinks. Their products are delicious, the branding on point and they have a great attitude when it comes to doing the right thing.
What’s next for your Black Bee Honey?
We’ve seen a lot of opportunities to grow our online sales so we’re currently focusing on that. Particularly now in the wake of the recent crisis. We’re also adding some great new products to our range, every one centred around supporting British Bees and their keepers.