The National Honey Competition featured products across a range of honey categories from creamed honey to chunky honey and cut honeycomb.
The 2022 Supreme Award winner was Timaru-based Jarved Allan of The Mānuka Collective, who took away the award for the second year in a row. “There was consistently high quality across the board,” according to head judge Maureen Conquer.
She said the judges were impressed with the quality of honey, that is improving every year, and it was very difficult to choose the winners. Conquer added that the honeydew honeys, in particular, were of much higher quality this year.
All entries were blind tasted, and an international scale of points was used to determine the winners across 12 main categories. For the first time, the honey tasting was opened up to conference attendees and a People’s Choice award given.
This section boasted an interesting range of flavours including thyme, pumpkin and lavenderinfused honeys. Hawkes Bay beekeeper Robyn Gichard’s liquid honey proved to be the favourite in this category.
The conference also was an opportunity to celebrate other successes within the industry, with awards presented to those making outstanding achievements in apiculture science, innovation, sustainability and photography.
Dr Linda Newstrom- Lloyd (and the Trees for Bees team) was awarded the Peter Molan trophy for exceptional contribution to apiculture science for their work on strategic plantations of bee feed that will maximise bee health and survival.
Canterbury-based family-owned business Heathstock Apiaries received the ApiNZ Sustainability Best Practice Award for their organic and sustainable beekeeping practices with an emphasis on quality hive management over quantity of hives. The Roy Paterson award for innovation went to another sustainable beekeeping company, Bees Kneez, for their hive nappy.
The ‘Unsung Hero Award’ went to Nick Wallingford for voluntarily digitising 600 publications (16,000) pages of the NZ Beekeeper Journal dating from 1914 to 2016.