New Zealand’s best honey producers have been named at the Apiculture New Zealand National Honey Competition, part of the industry’s annual conference in Rotorua.
The National Honey Competition featured products across a range of honey categories.
The 2023 Kiwi Labels Supreme Award winner was Timaru-based Jarved Allan from the Mānuka Collective, who took away the award for the third year in a row.
Head judge Maureen Conquer said the quality of honey had improved again this year with very few points separating the top three entrants.
Kaimai Range Honey’s Jody Mitchell produced the crowd favourite in the People’s Choice Award.
The conference was also an opportunity to celebrate other successes within the industry. Awards were presented to those making outstanding achievements in apiculture science, innovation, sustainability and photography.
Rotorua-based forest entomologist Stephanie Sopow of Scion (New Zealand Forest Research Institute) was awarded the Peter Molan Trophy for exceptional contribution to apiculture science.
Sopow has been leading work on the biological control of giant willow aphid with a parasitoid as part of a Ministry for Primary Industries’ Sustainable Farming Fund project, Management of Giant Willow Aphid.
Glasson Apiaries, based in Blackball on the West Coast, received the ApiNZ Sustainability Best Practice Award.
The Roy Paterson Award for Innovation went to another sustainably produced product, he Kōpani pallet cover. This plant-based product, made from hemp fibre and created by Stuart Fraser of Natural Sugars, reduces the reliance on plastic for wrapping hives.
The Unsung Hero Award went to Barry Foster, John Mackay and Steve Jackson from Tairāwhiti for their outstanding work in supporting beekeepers in their region following Cyclone Gabrielle.
The Supreme Winner in the ApiNZ National Photography competition was Cryn Russell of Haumoana, Hawke’s Bay, for a close-up photo of a bee on a daisy.