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The plan is to make Vermont honey more visible to Vermonters and hopefully improve the sales of honey produced here in Vermont.
This is your opportunity to shine! The VBA has retained the services of HMC Advertising, LLC to develop a comprehensive marketing campaign to tell the public what we already know:
Vermont honey is the best there is!
112 people attended the VBA's online winter meeting Saturday where President Andrew Munkres reported on our upcoming honey promotion campaign funded by an $80,000 federal block grant (detailed information to come in a future Update).
In a brief business meeting the membership approved a request by the Board of Directors asking for authorization to make periodic partial payments to the media contractor doing work under the federal honey promotion block grant up to an amount of $35,000 in any one payment with aggregate total payments to the contractor NTE $70,000 and with 100% of these periodic payments to be reimbursed back to the VBA by the Federal Block Grant.(Emphasis added.)
The membership also met, and heard from Steve Dwinell, the VAAFM's new Director of the Public Health and Agricultural Resource Management Divsion.
The 2023 VBA winter meeting featured two well-known speakers:
Dr. Scott McArt from the Dyce Lab at Cornell talked about pesticides affecting honey bees and his work on pesticide legislation in New York.
Randy Oliver discussed his work on oxalic acid extended release as well as some of his very recent research which can be reviewed at scientificbeekeeping.com.
This entire Zoom meeting (3 1/2 hours) was recorded. Current VBA members may watch the meeting by visiting the VBA website and looking under the Calendar menu for Past Workshop & Events Recordings. Minutes from the meeting are available here. (In both cases login required.)
The vaccine is not 100% effective but Rusty explains that as well as how a honey bee's immune system works in general and how the new vaccine works: How much will the new AFB vaccine help honey bees?
Vermont Bee Lab tells us the Gund Apis Fund proposal the Vermont Beekeepers Association helped develop was successful in obtaining funding:Dr. Samantha Alger, Director of the
"Big thanks to VBA for your support with this proposal and along the way. The pesticide data we presented in the proposal was made possible by VBA support and served as the basis for our ask to continue this work! The Gund Apis Fund will help to form the Vermont Pollinator Working Group. This group will launch with two initiatives: 1. native pollinator awareness campaign for Vermont farmers and 2. research and advocacy campaign to tackle Vermont's weak policies on nenonics. Included is $10K for more pesticide testing!"
The Vermont Pollinator Working Group is led by UVM bee experts Samantha Alger (who serves on the VBA Advisory Board), Extension's Laura Johnson (who is VBA's Membership Secretary), and Spencer Hardy of the Vermont Center for Ecostudies. Details on the announcement are available here.