Come on guys its all in cattle futures, some lady turned a couple of hundred bucks into many thousands with cattle futures if I remember correctly, there was some doubts on her ability with real estate though.
Here's my question to the OP,
If you can afford to buy 1000 hives over two years and not worry about it, why give up your day job?
I say go for it.
It's business like your, I like go to the auctions. To buy almost new bee equipment for $.40 on the dollar. That's really the only time I take off of my busy schedule to talk to other beekeeper, other then on here. Back in the early 90's we bought out a lot of comm. operations when the mite came into play.
My dad still works with me and tell of the good old days stories, when beekeeping was fun.
So, keep it fun and don't quit your day job.
I hope you make it. I was you six years ago. I had some crazy notions about top bar hives, my business plans, and early retirement. I am embarrassed now to read my old posts from those days. However my experience over the past years has been invaluable. I have made mistakes, lost money, learned from mistakes, made some money, had things happen out of my control which caused a loss, had things happen out of my control on which I made money. I am now what I consider a side liner, and debt free with bees. Maybe one day that retirement will come and I can work bees exclusively. Maybe it won't, the point being is really think about what you are doing before you spend a whole lot of money, please take it slow. The bees will be there. Right now I just concentrate of my family, the education of 500 middle school students (I'm a school principal), and breeding better queens. I also stand in awe of the folks who do this full time and make a go it. I sincerely hope you join their number. Good luck!
Quick question about honey harvesting and early pollination service.
I am reading up about honey production and sales... I can sell the honey myself and do nothing special outside labeling, but if I want someone else to sell it, like a grocery store, the law says it has to be "bottled and stored in a commercial kitchen"
What about extraction? Can I dump it into 5 gallon and 55 gallon containers (food grade) and sell it like that? Can I harvest, and store in my home, and later bottle in a licensed kitchen and sell it wholesale?
For pollination, will places accept an apiary with only 100 colonies? Do they have a number they like to see before you can make a decent lease fee per hive? is $40-50 per month a good rate to charge for hives delivered on the east coast? Is it better to transport them on my own truck and trailer, or should I just have them hauled by a trucking company? Should I own the trailer, and just try to find a semi to transport it?
Thanks for any help on this first year guys. Many people with local knowledge and 30+ years experience are giving me conflicting information.
I'm a beginner backyard beekeeper and I have no idea how to answer your questions. I'm just here to cheer on your success, I hope you make it big!
Please keep posting your progress. Make the experts eat their words.
I can also tell you how to lose tons of dough on a margin call in the process, as a result of violating a [previously unknown] Federal regulation.
Maybe you'd be better off with the homeless folks...
As to raising your own queens...are you familiar with AHB and Fla regulations pertaining to it?
If you want to be successful, study successful people and do what they do.
Someone mentioned on a similar thread one time that you'll figure things out along the way, don't try to go too fast too hard at the start and enjoy your bees. That last part stuck with me.
Best of luck to you and hope you enjoy your bees.
The very questions you are asking show how poorly thought out your business plan is. Bottom line is you will need between 3-4 million dollars to establish an apiary with 10,000 hives and the basic infrastructure to support it. Since you will need to run for almost a year before you realize much in revenue, add another million or two for operations. If you do not have this much venture capital available, I would strongly suggest you scale back your plans. You will also find that as a group we are much more willing to help someone whose feet are at least a little closer to the ground.
As to your question, you can get your home kitchen certified for production or utilize a canning kitchen in your area. A fully equiped extraction and processing facility will be needed as you expand. For transport, start with a 16' flatbed truck. You can add a trailer later. Once you get real big, you will probably need your own semi rig or two or five.
Local market conditions will determine how much you can charge for pollination services. Around Richmond, 40-50 per hive sounds about right for veggies. Lot of work for $400.
Thankfully, the bees are smarter than I am. They are doing well, in spite of my efforts to help them.
Where did raising my own queens come from? I had not decided yet, and I was strongly considering buying certified hygienic queens, and/or doing walk away splits to begin with.
I will look into certifying my own kitchen. It is not big, but if I move the table out, it is large enough to fit an uncapper and a 16 frame extractor with one 55 gallon drum at a time. I am not sure how many hives I can do, solo, with a 16 frame extractor, but I am thinking about 7 medium supers an hour in honey? I also have an unused bedroom I could convert, and that could hold a heck of an extractor.
Talking to "experts" a semi can haul 400 hives, (or one guy said 600???) and as I already have my CDL left from my last business, I can consider that my big decision point.
The flatbed truck sounds like a good idea. I could probably get a used U-haul chassis for not much money, later I can add a 32' trailer.
Glad to hear my 40-50 price range is planted in reality. Do you know how many hives they want you to have before they will talk to you about it?
You should consider asking a local commercial beek to let you tag along for a day or something. At least will give you an idea of what it's like.
I understand fully the passion for bees and wanting to become a commercial keeper. I think the best advice is to get a few hives this year and hold off on getting to deep into it until you have some experience. Would really suck to have to learn the hard lessons beekeeping teaches with hundreds of hives. But honestly good luck with whatever you decide and don't forget to have fun.
This cant be real. This has got to be someone spoofing the forum. Somebody's having fun and stirrin the pot
Summ Summ Bienchen summ herum
No, no I didn't. I asked if you were familiar with AHB, and Fla regulations pertaining to it vis a vis raising queens. I'm puzzled as to how you could so very badly misconstrue such a simple question, and instead respond with something completely different.
Fla DPI has some detailed Best Management Practice requirements for raising queens, you would do well to familiarize yourself with them as a prelude to considering embarking on such a project.
If you want to be successful, study successful people and do what they do.
Buy a boat. You’ll waste just as much money on it, but you’ll have way more fun!
I have had one for 4 years.
It still has yet to produce anything sweet for me, though it does seem to produce a lot of sweat.
Last edited by scoobertdoo; 04-14-2018 at 10:03 AM.