Local Raw Honey from Jardine Apiaries – Vendor Spotlight
Your Friendly Neighborhood Beekeepers
Keith and Sharon Jardine know a thing or two about bees. For more than forty years they have lived with, cared for, and learned from these tiny, fuzzy creatures. Their local raw honey is full of the flavors of Chester county, where the Jardines (and their bees) live.
Keith started his beekeeping journey as a young boy in South Africa. A colony of wild African bees settled in his backyard, and he began to keep tabs on them. A few years later, now in his mid-teens, Keith was managing 17 hives. He never stopped, and now Jardine has 12 apiary sites across Chester County, PA. They regularly sell at farmer’s markets in the area, as well as providing honey to stores like ours!
Keith and Sharon are proud of their unique connection with the bees they keep. They maintain a 98% winter survival rate across more than 100 hives, no mean feat when dealing with freezing PA temperatures. The couple is proactive when it comes to colony wellness, with an emphasis on clean genetic stock, swarm and disease prevention, and co-operation with other local apiarists. The best raw honey comes from healthy, happy bees, and that’s what the Jardines have in spades.
Keith and Sharon harvest raw honey weekly, resulting in a fresher product that preserves the character of the terroir and the flavor of the season. Eating local honey is like standing in a wild field, taking in the sun, the wind, and the rain. You can taste the passing of the summer from one batch to the next; each week new flowers bloom, and the bees pollinate them, weaving their unique botanical flavors into the honey.
Harvesting seasonally also helps preserve the hive’s natural cycles. A surplus of honey and wax (only achievable with happy, healthy bees) keeps stock high through the colder months.
Why Local Raw Honey?
Local raw honey is well known for its health benefits. It’s antimicrobial, anti-fungal, and known to soothe a sore throat or upset stomach. Because it’s derived from plants, it is full of antioxidants and trace nutrients that are important to your body. Lastly, it contains localized pollen, which can help reduce seasonal allergies. Honey has been used in medicine for thousands of years, and it is today, even in a hospital setting.
Unfortunately, commercial processing, pasteurization, and filtering tends to destroy many of these benefits. Typical supermarket honey has little nutritional similarity to the real McCoy.
That’s why Jardine Apiaries only strains, never filters their honey. They do not heat it above the natural temperature of the hive it came from, and bottle it with care, to preserve the natural enzymes and local pollens within. They never add sugar syrups or other adulterants to their product, so it’s 100% pure, raw, and fresh.
Try some Jardine Apiaries local raw honey and experience the magic for yourself. Stir it into your tea, spread it on a piece of (local) fresh sourdough, or simply eat it straight out of the jar.