This episodes guest is Simeon Valkenburg from Valkenburg Apiaries.
When you meet someone you know will be both a friend and mentor, it is a glorious moment.
When I first met Simeon Valkenburgback in 2016, this was how I felt.
Having him as my first guest on the BEES WITH BEN podcast super special.
It was early springtime in Townsville, and Simeon, his brother Paul and I were part of a group of 6 beekeepers.
We were 6 passionate apiarists volunteering to fight the Asian Honeybee varroa mite incursion.
I realised I was among very incredible company, and our experience working together was eye-opening, bonding and inspiring.
Who Are the Valkenburg Brothers?
The Valkenburg brothers are beekeepers based in South Australia.
Together they run Valkenburg Apiaries, as well as invaluable initiatives such as the Beekeepers Field Day.
Hosted in Renmark, the field day educates about the vital connection between bees and almond production.
The hardworking brothers were passionate, dedicated, politically engaged.
Simeon and Paul are easily some, if not the best commercial beekeepers I know in Australia.
Simeon has built his commercial beekeeping venture on passion and integrity.
“Together with my brother Paul, I have been working for a number of years building our beekeeping business. We manage over a thousand hives, which is generally considered a medium sized operation by South Australian standards. We derive most of our turnover from bulk honey production. When it comes to managing an apiary business, it is the bee husbandry part which particularly captures my interest. In our opinion, the keynote to commercial success in the beekeeping industry is contained in the old adage, ‘If you look after your bees, they will look after you’.”Simeon Valkenurg
With a focus on positive communication and reciprocated benefits with land holders in their area, the brothers honey production and pollination services have earned them a stellar reputation.
They understand the importance of a mutually beneficial relationship with other farmers and community members.
It is this integrity that shines through in their work on so many levels.
Since we first met, I have had many interactions with Simeon at conventions and events around the country.
It is a total pleasure to be able to introduce you, the Ben’s Bees community, to Simeon himself.
This episode we not only chat about Valkenburg Apiaries and bee nutrition.
We also talk about the highlights and challenges of running a commercial beekeeping business in Australia.
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