The AEAV advocates a “living” apiculture that respects the insect, the colony, its biotope and its ecosystem as closely as possible.
The specificity of ELBA is to propose a protocol ensuring the implementation of a complete method that allows a simple and clear teaching of apiculture.
The heart of this protocol:
- Work exclusively with local bee subspecies specific to each ecosystem: total refusal to import subspecies of other countries or even artificial insemination, true rape of the queen.
- Apply apiculture techniques conform to the biology of local subspecies: use of hives proportionate to the size of the subspecies, development of the swarm and then of the colony.
These elements are the fundamental principles of a living beekeeping but other principles must be respected:
- Take into account the useful potential of foraging (POF) so as not to saturate the area of bees which could be found in too many.
- Leave sufficient reserves to prevent the bee from suffering during periods of
- Do not transhumance except for short distances to move colonies and distribute them as well as possible.
- Respect the biological rhythm of the bees throughout the annual cycle.
- The non-introduction of foreign waxes to the exploitation.
The living apiculture protocol is in addition to the main principles of organic
agriculture and the respect of its specifications. The fundamental elements of which are:
- Quality control of forage areas.
- Exclusive feeding with honey.
- The use of natural materials and biological products during all stages (construction and protection of hives, extraction, packaging, storage of honey).
- Prophylaxis and veterinary care in line with organic certification.
- Compliance with quality standards for hive products and in particular their processing temperature.
The respect of this protocol ensures optimal quality of beehive products both organoleptically (conservation of essential oils) as well as the chemical composition but also in respect of the energies of harmony that the bees infuse into their production. Quality hive products are the first corollary to good health and well-being of bees.
Living beekeeping draws its lessons from the past but is resolutely modern and geared towards a future conscious of the values of each and every link in life and especially of what bees represent. Harmony with nature is not to the detriment of the financial.
Why is living beekeeping profitable despite a significant harvest difference (1/3 less per year on average over 10 years)? Here are the different points:
The selling price of honey to the kilo.
Time devoted to a hive.
The absence of nourishment.
The absence of the cost of transhumance.
The lack of investment in honey farm.
The operating cost differential.
The differential of working hours per kilo of honey harvested without mentioning the quality of the relationship to the bee that has no price.
Reduction of colony losses.
The decrease if not the absence of chemical treatments even those mandatory.
All these end-to-end parameters show that, beyond the harmony that it generates, living beekeeping is not, as some would like to confine it, a beekeeping dreamer but on the contrary a profitable beekeeping.