NATIONAL HONEY MARKET NEWS
U.S. DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE
AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE
FRUIT AND VEGETABLE DIVISION
21 N. 1st AVENUE, SUITE 224
YAKIMA, WA 98902-2663
HONEY MARKET FOR THE
MONTH OF AUGUST, 2000 IN VOLUMES OF 10,000 POUNDS OR GREATER.
PRICES PAID TO BEEKEEPERS FOR EXTRACTED, UNPROCESSED HONEY IN
MAJOR PRODUCING STATES BY PACKERS, HANDLERS & OTHER LARGE
USERS, CENTS PER POUND, F.O.B. OR DELIVERED NEARBY, CONTAINERS
EXCHANGED OR RETURNED, PROMPT DELIVERY & PAYMENT UNLESS OTHERWISE
- MIXED FLOWERS, EXTRA
LIGHT AMBER, 52¢
- SOYBEAN, LIGHT AMBER, 46 - 48¢
- ALFALFA, WHITE, 50¢
- BUCKWHEAT, EXTRA LIGHT AMBER, 45¢
- MIXED FLOWERS, EXTRA LIGHT AMBER, 46¢
- MIXED FLOWERS, LIGHT AMBER, 45 - 47¢ (HIGHER PRICE FOR
- ORANGE, WHITE, 50 - 56¢
- SAGE, EXTRA WHITE, 58¢ - - - WHITE, 55¢
- ALFALFA, EXTRA LIGHT AMBER, 57¢ - - - LIGHT AMBER,
- MIXED FLOWERS, LIGHT AMBER, 44¢
- GALLBERRY/SAW PALMETTO, LIGHT AMBER (NON-TABLE), 45¢
- ORANGE, WHITE, 52¢ - - - MEDIUM AMBER, 69 - 71¢
- ALFALFA, EXTRA LIGHT AMBER, 45¢
- CLOVER, WHITE, 58¢
- ALFALFA, EXTRA LIGHT AMBER, 45¢
- CLOVER, WHITE, 58¢
- MIXED FLOWERS, LIGHT AMBER, 46¢
- BLUEBERRY, MEDIUM AMBER, 65¢
- CLOVER, EXTRA LIGHT AMBER, 52¢ - - - LIGHT AMBER, 68¢
- KNAPWEED, MEDIUM AMBER, 65¢
- CLOVER, WHITE, 53¢
- CLOVER/BASSWOOD, WHITE, 53¢
- WILDFLOWERS, AMBER, 48¢
- ALFALFA, LIGHT AMBER, 39¢ (SMALL LOT)
- CLOVER, WHITE, 54 - 56¢
- CLOVER, WHITE, 58¢
- CLOVER, WHITE, 50 - 56¢ - - - EXTRA LIGHT AMBER, 55¢
- CLOVER, EXTRA WHITE, 58 - 61¢ - - - WHITE, 58 - 63¢
- MINT, AMBER, 35¢ (SMALL LOT)
- CLOVER, WHITE, 55 - 57¢ - - - LIGHT AMBER, 75¢
- CLOVER, EXTRA LIGHT AMBER, 55¢
- CHINESE TALLOW, LIGHT AMBER, 45 - 48¢
- MIXED FLOWERS, LIGHT AMBER, 44¢
- ALFALFA, WHITE, 53¢ - - - EXTRA LIGHT AMBER, 42¢
- ALFALFA, LIGHT AMBER, 42¢ - - - AMBER, 36¢
- CANOLA, WHITE, 53¢ (SMALL LOT)
- MIXED FLOWERS, LIGHT AMBER, 40¢ - - - AMBER, 39¢
- MINT, DARK AMBER, 32¢
- RASPBERRY, WHITE, 53¢
- CLOVER, WHITE, 58¢
PRICES PAID TO CANADIAN
BEEKEEPERS FOR UNPROCESSED BULK HONEY BY PACKERS AND IMPORTERS
IN U.S. CURRENCY, F.O.B. SHIPPING POINT, CONTAINERS INCLUDED
UNLESS OTHERWISE STATED. DUTY AND CROSSING CHARGES EXTRA. CENTS
- CLOVER, WATER WHITE, 50¢ DELIVERED
PRICES PAID TO IMPORTERS
FOR BULK HONEY, DUTY PAID, CONTAINERS INCLUDED, CENTS PER POUND
EX-DOCK OR POINT OF ENTRY UNLESS OTHERWISE STATED.
EAST COAST. . . ARGENTINA
- CLOVER, WHITE, 50
- MIXED FLOWERS, EXTRA LIGHT AMBER, 48 - 49¢
- MIXED FLOWERS, LIGHT AMBER, 49¢
- MIXED FLOWERS, LIGHT AMBER, 44 - 49¢
CALIFORNIA BEESWAX MARKET
SITUATION --- AUGUST, 2000
(unbleached, raw beeswax, delivered to handlers's warehouse)
Trading is seasonally slow as producers were busy extracting
their honey crop instead of rendering wax. They are also unhappy
with current prices. On the other side, handlers are not in need
of a lot of wax this time of year.
Light colored wax was being purchased or traded at $1.00 - 1.40
per pound with most handlers paying $1.30. The higher price was
paid for wax that was brought in and traded for supplies or payment
was delayed. There was too little dark wax purchased or traded
during August to quote prices.
COLONY, HONEY PLANT &
MARKET CONDITIONS DURING AUGUST
Colonies were reported
in fair to good condition. However moisture levels within the
state have begun to improve but still considered a drought in
the central part of the state. Honey production has been reduced
due to temperatures ranging in the high 90s & 100s with very
little moisture. Due to the drier than normal conditions some
beekeepers report lots of supplemental feeding with com syrup
and sugar water due to the lack of any kind of blooming bushes
that contain nectar.
The flow of honey is very light. Prices for honey are generally
APPALACHIAN DISTRICT - (MD, PA, VA, WV)
Weather conditions in the area for August were cooler than
normal with the feeling more like September than August. Temperatures
were below normal (highs in the 80's, normal highs are in the
90's) with many scattered showers, although not as much precipitation
as July saw. Honeybees are in good condition, although honey
flows have remained sporadic due to the cooler temperatures and
rainy and overcast days. They are foraging on an abundance of
wildflowers and the start of goldenrod. Many beekeepers are actively
entering honey in state and county fairs.
Several high pressure
systems dominated California's weather, producing mostly above
normal temperatures. Daytime highs were in the 90's to low 100's
across the Central Valley and inland portions of Southern California.
Temperatures along the coast were in the 60's and 70's. The only
break came from an occasional thunderstorm along the northern
Despite the warm temperatures, the bees are reported to be in
good condition as they are sitting in late summer locations at
the edge of the desert or near rivers and along the coast. They
did very well pollinating alfalfa and vegetable seed crops but
the honey flow was pretty much done by the end of August. They
are still bringing in pollen from tamarack, blue curls, greasewood,
eucalyptus, bottlebrush, spikeweed and Brazilian pepper trees
which will sustain the colonies for a while longer but some beekeepers
were getting ready to add pollen supplements before winter. Most
producers were finishing up extracting this years honey crop
which is reported to be about the same to slightly less than
last year. Others are leaving the honey on a little longer because
robbing was reported from weaker colonies. Divides of stronger
colonies will also be done shortly.
Honey packers report they are being offered plenty of local honey
despite the low prices being paid. Some producers are putting
their honey under loan but in some cases, the loan price is higher
than what packers are paying. A few producers are only selling
because they need the money right now. Packers also reported
they are not being offered a lot of foreign honey right now.
Beekeeping supply companies noted their business is also slow
Very warm temperatures
have continued for most of the month of August for Colorado.
Daytime highs were mostly in the mid 90s and the lows were in
the mid 60s. The last ten days of the month has brought relief
from the warmth and very dry conditions with the monsoon moisture
flow for most of the state. Most of the state has been very dry,
including the mountain areas.
Because of the very dry conditions throughout the state, many
of the 30,000 beehives in the state have been damaged by hungry
bears. The drought and early freeze dried up most of their traditional
diet of berries and nuts. Bears have caused damage to many bee
colonies in the mountain areas, and have worked their way to
the plains in search of food. Many beekeepers have decided to
harvest their honey crop about a month early to avoid any other
losses from the bears.
significant amounts of rain over some localities. Rainfall ranged
from traces to almost four inches. Daytime highs were in the
90s, while nighttime lows were in the 70s.
This is the most dormant period of the year. The beekeepers are
getting prepared for the fall flow. The activity is very slow.
The bees that are out of the state are coming back within three
to four weeks. Bees are making a little bit of honey from cabbage
palm and other wild flowers.
Demand for Florida honey is very light. Prices are much lower.
Colonies around the
state were generally in good condition. Around the state in August
various wildflowers were providing bees sufficient honey production
to sustain their levels of store. There was a dirth of any significant
nectars source. The sourwood flow in the north Georgia mountains
produced good yields and has created favorable overwintering
conditions. Fall flows from aster and goldenrod is on the verge
of being noted at the first of September in the mountains of
The month of August was hot and dry throughout Idaho. Despite
these conditions the colonies are in good to excellent condition
producing a decent flow, which may be a little short when the
final tally comes in. The bees are collecting both pollen and
nectar from alfalfa, corn, wild flowers, sagebrush and rabbit
The wholesale movement of honey has been slow, but steady. The
demand is noted as low or weak and not as robust as last year.
for the month varied little overall from northern sections to
southern sections. Most daylight temperatures ranged in the mid
eighties over the state the first of the month. Mid-month, the
southeastern part experienced high humidity and temperatures
in the mid to upper nineties, with Fairfield reporting a high
of ninety-nine degrees the 17th. The high temperatures and humidity
were stressful on hives placed in open vegetable fields in central
and southern sections of the state. Rainfall continued to be
light in the northern section of the state while some area flooding
was reported in some southern sections. Paris, in the east-central
section, reported dry conditions while Robinson approximately
forty miles south received more than ten inches in the same period.
The state fair at Springfield was well attended the first of
the month. After declining numbers of beekeepers over the past
several years, the State Beekeepers booth was busy answering
inquiries. The Beekeepers association reported a growing interest
in hobbyist beekeeping.
Honey quality for the year 2000 crop is expected to be very good.
The extracted honey samples at this year's state fair show were
very good quality. Moisture content was 16-17% and that is considered
Supplemental feeding is to begin earlier than normal this year
due to prospects of a very poor fall flow. Goldenrod, the main
fall floral source, has not developed well.
Honey and wax movement was good at farmers markets. Retail and
bulk movement was slow. Honey prices were about unchanged with
prices quoted in the 55-60 cent range. This continues to be lower
than previous years.
Summer vegetable growers demand for honeybees for pollination
created a shortage. The increase demand had many out of state
bee being moved into the state. State honeybee inspectors found
some cases of diseased honeybees that had been brought in from
other states to pollinate pickle fields.
Extraction activities were moving quite rapidly. Beekeepers were
harvesting a very high quality honey crop due to the frequent
rainfall and moderate summer temperatures. The honey crop being
extracted was estimated to be far short of last years' crop.
Southern sections reported beekeepers had an average crop of
75-90 pounds of honey per hive. Northern sections, which received
less rainfall, honey extracted per hive was 30-50 pound. These
early estimates, were only fair estimates. The frequency and
amounts of rainfall has varied throughout the year 2000 crop
season within a local area as well as statewide.
Beekeepers were treating colonies as extraction of honey was
completed. The State Chief Apiary Inspector has been encouraged
by the beekeepers treatment program to control mites. The identifying
of areas where the small hive beetles are present has also become
a problem for the state beekeepers.
Floral sources bees had been working were various vegetable bloom,
with cucumber and pickle the major vegetable crops. It was noted,
because of the frequency of rainfall, clover bloom has been drastically
less than normal. Roadside wild flowers of Queen Ann's Lace,
bachelor buttons, and dandelions were in adequate supply.
Demand for honey was very good, as many farmers markets throughout
the state featured locally collected honey. Bulk honey sales
were slow and prices remained about unchanged .The retail level
sales were reported slow.
Colonies were reported in fair to good condition. Some beekeepers
are hoping that the drought is over as they are now having cooler
temperatures with adequate rainfall; although earlier this month
temperature ranged in the high 90s with some days 100 degrees
and above. A few beekeepers report some Apistan resistance from
the bees but generally most hives predominately in good condition.
The flow of honey is moderate. Prices for honey are generally
MICHIGAN & OHIO
Colonies around the state were in good condition. The month of
August experienced about normal to normal temperatures for most
of the month. The bees have fed on a number of sources including
forage and floral sources. No supplemental feeding was noted
in many areas due to the temperatures being about normal for
By months end, most beekeepers had removed supers and extracted
the summer flow.
Demand for honey was light.
Colonies around the state were generally in good condition. During
the month of August precipitation was below normal amounts. In
the southern portions of the state colonies gathered enough pollen
and nectar from late summer wildflowers to sustain their levels
of store. In the northern portion of the state colonies were
sustaining themselves from nectar and pollen gathered from the
soybean and cotton crops. A fall flow of nectar and pollen in
the central and northern portions is expected in September from
floral sources such as boneset, goldenrod, Spanish needle and
aster. These expected flows will help buildup colonies reserves
for colder months ahead.
MISSOURI & IOWA
August was generally
dryer and hotter than normal, except for Central Missouri which
received slightly above average rainfall. Beekeepers were busy
adding supers and treating for mites before the fall honey flow.
Bee populations in the hives for the peak honey flow were generally
good. Nectar flow was reduced in Southeast Missouri and Northeast
Arkansas by the hot weather which caused cotton and soybeans
to shed blooms. Cotton fields were being defoliated the last
week of August in the Missouri "Boothill". Honey yields
of the early harvest appear about normal. Honey in Missouri was
variable from wet to dry depending on location of hives. Much
of the honey from the Missouri River Valley need drying. Honey
from Iowa was generally dry with good color and quality.
Extremely hot and dry
conditions continued across the entire state during the first
three weeks of August. They only area to receive any significant
moisture was the northeast corner but the storms also included
hail and high winds. Daytime highs were frequently in the mid-90's
to low 100's. A small amount of relief came the very end of the
month when light rain, higher humidity and cooler temperatures
were reported across the state. The break in the weather was
pretty much too little, too late for most of the state as 27
fires, covering over 600,000 acres were not yet contained the
end of the month. The storms that brought the rain sometimes
brought lightning which could cause additional fires.
Despite the weather, the bees are reported to be in fairly good
condition, especially those sitting near irrigated crops such
as alfalfa. Extracting of this years honey crop was still going
on the end of the month but production is reported to be down
as much as 30% of normal. Some producers had already sold their
bees as soon as the honey was extracted. A shortage of water
will be a concern for some time as topsoil moisture was still
67% very short.
Good honey sales were
reported in August at county fairs and the coming month of September
has even more fairs coming up. Beekeepers with fewer hives reported
good honey sales at flea and farmers markets on the California
boarder. Weather has been dry and warm, but starting to see some
seasonal monsoon activity. One of the commercial beekeepers is
in California for the yellow star thistle bloom.
The honey flow has been very good and hives are at the peak of
health. Floral sources this last month included the last of the
annual yard flowers, alfalfa and clover. Rabbit brush should
start blooming this next month.
Weather for August continued to be cool and wet, except for a
few days' temperatures did not climb out of the 70s, with precipitation
remaining above average. Beekeepers are reporting very slow production
and a below average honey crop, with many beekeepers not harvesting
Beekeepers are now starting to treat their colonies for mites,
and problems continued for some beekeepers with reports of large
infestations of Varroa and Tracheal mites in certain areas of
central New England.
Demand for New England honey is good for the limited supplies
available. Good retail sales were reported at farm stands and
The colonies around the state were in generally good condition.
The beekeepers reported the bees have had adequate stores with
no supplemental feeding necessary. The bees are getting pollen
and nectar from goldenrod and purple loose strife. They have
also been working clover and alfalfa. The weather during the
month of August had cooler than normal temperatures.
For most of August, temperatures were above normal with a couple
of exceptions along the coast. Willamette Valley temperatures
ranged from 2-8 degrees above normal while Eastern Oregon reported
daytime highs in the mid 90's to low 100's which is as much as
12 degrees above normal. The only break came around the middle
of the month when daytime highs dropped into the 80's. Along
the coast, conditions were cool but very little rain was reported.
For the year, about two-thirds of the state still had below normal
rainfall with some areas close to 50% short. By the end
of August, topsoil moisture was 50-75% short.
Bees are reported to be in very good condition as they finished
up vegetable seed pollination. They were then able to forage
on wild carrot and thistles. Many commercial beekeepers finished
up extracting their honey crop which is reported to be slightly
below last year but the quality of the honey is very good. Mite
treatments were put in as soon as the honey was off, which is
a little earlier than normal, and extra feed was also added when
Very few losses were noted from pesticides except when the bees
were set near other crops such as alfalfa and Christmas trees,
which needed a little extra spray this year because of the hot,
Temperatures ranged from the high 90s to the high 70s, with lots
of humidity and moderate rainfall. Most beekeepers report their
bees in fair to good conditions. Beekeepers report a drought
in different areas of the state due to the lower than normal
rainfall. Beekeepers report a higher than normal rate of bees
swarming due to the heat.
The flow of honey is fairly light to moderate. Honey prices are
It has been hot and
dry the entire summer in Utah. The honey market is dismal. Availability
of irrigation water in some instances has reduced or stopped
hay production, and has left the bees with even less floral sources
and moisture. The current floral sources are clover and alfalfa.
Through the 18th, conditions across the entire state were
hot and dry. Daytime highs west of the Cascades were in the 80's
or as much as 6 degrees above normal, while the eastern half
of the state was frequently in the upper 90's to low 100's. Little
to no rain was reported. Around the 19th, a cooling trend occurred
in Western Washington bringing relief from the heat and a few
rainshowers, which ended 21 days without any precipitation. The
same time, Eastern Washington remained dry but temperatures dropped
into the 80's. Conditions heated up again until the end of August
when highs in the 80's in the west and 90's in the east. Topsoil
moisture the end of the month was still 50% short but irrigation
water was still adequate in most areas.
Bees that stayed in the state during August are reported to be
in good condition as they were sitting near rivers and irrigated
crops as many of the other sources dried up. A good honey crop
was being extracted from mint and alfalfa. Some bees were left
here to use for increases later. Many commercial beekeepers moved
their bees out of the state this summer because of previous problems
with losses from sprays. Bees in North and South Dakota are also
reported to be in fairly good condition but spotty rain back
there dictated what kind of a honey crop they will have. Some
of the bees will be left there until October when they are moved
to California holding yards.
an overall slowing of the honey flow last month. The poor pollen
collection was blamed on frequent rains and some high winds in
southern sections. Northern sections had some hail damage the
first of the month with some areas receiving golf size hail and
some areas receiving approximately three inches of rainfall.
Temperatures for the month were generally four to six degrees
below the normal over most of the state.
By the last of the month, many beekeepers had pulled hives out
of the vegetable fields. Honeybees seemed to be in good condition
however, as beekeepers stepped up extraction activity. The quality
of honey was reported better than last year. Beekeepers were
encouraged to treat hives after removing supers and harvesting
honey. General concern expressed by beekeepers centered on continued
mite problems and the mite's resistance to treatment.
Honey demand seasonally picked up as summer festivals were well
attended. Wax and candle demand was also reported good. Commercial
demand continued to be slow with little bulk movement reported.