Howick Honey Co is a small business run by a big family.
Together with their six children, Rory and Zofia Mack run the delightful raw honey outlet in the heart of Howick, KwaZulu Natal.
Their own product – Tin House Honey – is highly sought after and a product of the entire Mack family. “We all have a part to play in producing our final product” says Mack, “from the strongest – carrying heavy honey-filled supers, to the youngest – labeling jars. We enjoy watching our bees; we enjoy working with them and find it fascinating that there is something new to learn every day”.
Howick Honey Co’s raw honey comes from the plantations, gardens and farmlands across the countryside in South Africa.
Raw honey comes straight from the hive, is extracted and sieved and never heated. This means that it retains all of the natural goodness – enzymes and proteins that makes raw honey so special. And of course, every jar is different, depending on where the beehives are located, what time of year it is and what types of flowers the bees are collecting their nectar and pollen from.
The shop stocks liquid, crystallised and creamed honey in various quantities ranging from tiny bear-hugged jars to 1kg bottles.
Also on offer is a variety of bee-related paraphernalia: Honey confectionery, new and second-hand beekeeping books for adults and children, Ultra Bee skin protection products, bee-friendly seeds, beeswax candles, tea cups and stationery, all featuring bees.
The Macks feel it is important to educate customers about bees. Many of their products include interesting information on the South African bee.
Although a third generation beekeeper, Mack admits that there is always something to learn.
“The KZN Bee Farmers Association has been tremendously helpful” he says “beekeepers young and old share their knowledge.” He adds with a smile “it is a fact that each beekeeper has the best system and no two beekeepers have the same system”!
The importance of bees in the world cannot be over emphasized. Here in South Africa it is estimated that they pollinate 50% of our crops. And two million flowers are visited to enable bees to produce a 500g jar of honey.