Rapanui Bees is a family based beekeeping business. We have been working with our own hobby apiaries for more than 40 years, then in 2008 formed Rapanui Bees Limited (RMP: Rapanui1) and began commercial production. Initially we sold our produce wholesale to Manuka Health, but we have recently started exporting to Singapore and selling online in New Zealand.
We believe in doing things as close to nature as possible and market both creamed and raw honey to meet varied consumer demand. The raw honey is straight from the bee and can be disconcerting for those of you who have never eaten it before, but it is especially delicious. It will crystallise over time but this is a natural process easily reversed by gently warming in the sun or some other cosy space.
Our work practices are bee friendly and although we do have to meet normal business targets we try and do this without exploiting our lovely furry little partners. We don’t transport our bees to commercial crop pollination and while around 50% of our hives are moved to Mānuka fields the remainder stay at home to enjoy the bee heaven here in the Waikato.
We harvest our honey gently with escape boards, making sure we look after the bees and leave some of their own supplies of honey and pollen as natural winter supplies. We replace our queens on a regular cycle to ensure hives stay healthy and virile, using our own queens that we grow in special incubator hives. Keeping a strong genetic mix is important helping to maintain the strength and honey gathering potential of each hive.