Historic New Zealand Beekeeping

Those times gone by memories of beekeeping in New Zealand - open discussion forum
Here's a fun exercise, that can sometimes lead to a better understanding of NZ's beekeeping history... Think about the date of your own birth. Mine was in May 1951 (albeit not in NZ!) http://beekeeping.nz/NZBkpr And then find the NZ Beekeeper magazine that is closest to that date (until the 1990s, there were only 4 issues per year) - mine was, in fact, May 1951. So what was happening in the beekeeping industry back then? First I looked to the list of Executive and branch contacts. I...
I just returned from a short time in Wellington, where I again took the opportunity to visit the National Library/Alexander Turnbull Libraries. Edgar Earp was one of the very first apiary staff in NZ. Upon his retirement (?) in the late 1930s, he donated his own collection of books and other items - about 400 items in all. They are not really easy to get at - you can't just browse them on the shelf. You have to order them from the catalog. But to be able to hold the programme for the...
 
This dates back to 1984, and was mostly relating to the Bay of Plenty and Waikato areas... Originally posted https://www.nzbees.net/forums/topic/17070-industry-code-of-practice/
In the late 1970s, only a few years or so after I came to NZ to work as a beekeeper, I had the chance to meet Allan Bates. At the time, Allan was in his late 80s. He had started beekeeping in Taranaki before the first war, and he even attended the first NBA Conference ever, in 1912. He served on the NBA Executive on numerous occasions over the years, and as president for two years in the early 1920s. He was made a Life Member by the NZ in 1960. At some point, he moved to Matamata and...
 
This photo from a few years ago now - one of my favourites. Ian Berry once said to me that when he was at the NBA conference each year, it felt like he was with his family. His smile in this photo says it all. I've got several photos of Kevin Ecroyd when he was only a child. He and his sister used to get used in a range of honey-promoting photographic advertisements. https://www.guardianonline.co.nz/news/town-buzzing-with-beekeepers/ Originally posted...
In 1910 Mr W Lenz had extended his operations to Taranaki, but in 1913 decided to sell his Taranaki holdings. A small co-operative was formed to buy the bees to sell them out to the members in lots, and to act as a marketing operation. The New Zealand Co-op Honey Producers' Association Ltd (HPA) was formed by HW Gilling (Matapu), HR Penny (Okaiawa), GH Buckeridge (of Eltham, the agent of the Farmers' Co-operative Organisation Society, which handled produce for export to England on...
Trevor Palmer-Jones started research initially into mastitis, but then in 1944 was made the chief NZ beekeeping scientist. He worked through until 1975 - and was made a life member of the NBA. In the middle 1980s I had dinner with Trevor and his wife Claire. I asked Trevor what was the most amazing advance in beekeeping research that had come about during his time as a researcher. He didn't hesitate. "The photocopier!" In all of those early years, a magazine might come by on...
Through the life of the HMA - early 1950s to late 1970s - the HMA held moneys back (esp in a good year), with the concept that these funds went into an 'equalisation fund'. Theoretically, that fund would be used to increase the payout in bad years. Remember, the HMA's payout to beekeepers pretty much dictated the price packers' had to pay for honey - if a packer was not willing to meet the figure, the bkpr could always send it to the HMA. When the HMA was to be wound up, there was a lot...

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