Our new raw, organic honey

Organic honey is very hard to come by. A bee’s foraging distance is up to 12km, and for honey to be certified as organic, the honey producer must be able to prove that its bees have only foraged in organic land. These distances are beyond most producers’ capabilities, especially on our small island, where organic land is typically surrounded by non-organic farmland sprayed with artificial chemicals.

But after years of searching, we have found a fantastic organic honey producer: Bona Mel, a family run Spanish business who have been beekeeping for three generations, and organic since 1990. They are based in the Spanish mountains, where their hives are scattered across the natural parks of Sierra Mariola and La Safor, Alicante, which are home to an astonishingly rich natural variety of plants. To the bees, that’s a botanical smorgasbord, where blossom is available all year round.

Their raw wildflower honey is red tinged, with a fragrant, sweetly floral taste – and because they live in a completely uncultivated area, we can be certain that it’s 100% organic. The honey is raw, and prepared by bees with the nectar from various Mediterranean wild flowers.

Because Bona Mel produce, prepare and jar their honey themselves, it is traceable right back to the hive.

You can add Bona Mel honey to your order now: https://www.riverford.co.uk/shop/honey-250g


6 responses to “Our new raw, organic honey

  1. As everyone knows, bees are in trouble. I used to be a “beekeeper”, but found the so called managing of hives at odds with the welfare of the bees. For the last eight years my hives have been wild. I have not opened or tampered with them in any way, except to put a loose chicken wire covering over the hives in winter to stop woodpeckers from gaining entry in the worst of the winter weather. The hives are in woodland. All the hives are thriving I’m glad to say and am putting up tree hives to attract the swarms as I don’t want them to end up with beekeepers. I would heartily recommend the keeping of a wild hive for the good of the bees, and there really is no need to eat honey.

  2. Nichola Coughlin

    I add raw unpasteurised honey into recipes instead of cane sugar and find it tasty. This is part of my quest for a healthier lifestyle for me and my young children.

  3. It’s great that you’ve found an organic honey producer, but I’m keen to hear if Bona Mel have any bee welfare commitments in place…?

    Honey production can actually cause a decline in bee populations if done on an industrial profit-centred scale. It is also very common for the queen bee to have her wings cut off so that she stays with the bee colony, thus increasing production. And many companies fail to leave enough honey for the bees themselves, leaving them a nutritionally poorer sugar substitute. I doubt that Bona Mel is like this, but could you confirm that for us please?

    • Frances Welford

      I was very interested to read Henrietta and Nicola’s comments, and share their concern. I look forward to seeing Riverford’s response to Nicola’s query. If it’s a positive response, I will be ordering some of Bona Mel’s raw honey.

  4. Thanks for your queries Henrietta and Nicola. Bona Mel have very high standards of welfare and we asked them a lot of in depth questions before choosing them as a supplier. They don´t cut off the wings, they are very much against this! There are other hives in the same area, and if the bees leave one hive, they will move to another hive (which is natures call…)Honey is always left in the hives for the bees, with a minimum of 20kg being left over winter. I hope that helps and that you will be able to enjoy some of this amazing organic honey.

  5. Hi I’m very interested, could you please send me a price list.
    Kind Regards
    Mr Michael Pickles

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