Why did I become a beekeeper?
My early childhood experience has left a fundamental mark on my thinking. In the early 60s, farming was what the power of land gave you. In the village where I grew up in Somogy. Fruit, vegetable, grain varieties were grown that could not be attacked by pathogens. Keeping the land productive was essential. No one used fertilizers or other chemicals, because this was last period when they were not available.
I really came from the Middle Ages. My ancestors 500 years ago treated the land just as my grandparents did. I know because I went to work with them. We lived off what we grew. We sold the surplus, and used the money to buy salt, sugar, vinegar, yeast, at the grocery store. We produced everything ourselves. We kept animals and our vegetables and fruit were juicy and healthy, free of chemicals.
I think the most damaging change in our lives is the advent of chemistry in agriculture. I believe that at least 90 per cent of the chemicals in our environment are supplied by so-called modern agribusiness. Today, the soil is almost just a carrier. We are not consuming what nature gives us, because the plant is born from the chemicals that the farmer puts on the land. The issue of the natural nutritional value of the soil has been pushed into the background, with fertilizers and chemicals applied to the plants taking center stage.
Important reason why I became a beekeeper is that what bees give us is still as natural a food as it was centuries or even millennia ago. We able to provide absolutely valuable whole food to people.
Another ting vhy I became a beekeeper: Most probably because I have a strong connection with nature and beekeeping is the activity that has kept me most in harmony with nature. I don't know of another part of agriculture that has only a positive impact on the environment. What I see is that agrochemicals are more severe in nature than the climate crisis. The enormous damage can be felt in a single generation. Even in my lifetime, the nature part of living environment has shrunk to a fraction of its size.
I am not concerned with whether or not this happened out of necessity. We're past it. The destruction was inevitable, it happened. I am not happy about it, but there is no point in lamenting. I am not a militant conservationist, I see no point. I'd rather be a beekeeper. I'm an optimist. I hope that our civilization will one day reach a point where we don't need to release millions of tonnes of chemicals into the environment to produce food. There are many examples of how, once pollution is removed, nature can quickly regenerate itself completely.
In our inherited family apiary, we preserve the values of nature in the production of honey. We are certified organic beekeepers and use only natural materials to protect our bees. We carry on the tradition that was whole and flawless. Bees collect nectar from flowers. This is also true of the plants farmers grow, from which the honey itself is healthier than the plant. Honey from field-grown sunflowers or canola can certainly be said to be non-toxic. Even if it has previously been treated with chemicals. The bees act as biological filters and cannot carry contaminated nectar into the hive. If the pesticide does not break down before flowering, the sensitive bees will die. Unfortunately, this is happening more and more often.
It is also true that a large part of Europe is not under chemical agriculture. These are forests, grasslands, wetlands. The honey from these areas is of high quality. Hungarian acacia honey is one such honey. However, it is undeniable that the further bees are from destructive environmental influences, the closer they are to ancient harmony. The same is true for nectar-producing plants. I have always sold for my customers that honey I have produced myself or originated from other beekeepers what I have personally verified, wherever in the world they lives. I have always had the desire to visit those places, far from civilization, where I can produce the perfect honey, in a place of ancient harmony. After forty years of work, I can do just that.
For these places I will go to the ends of the earth.