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'Golden Lining' Of 2012's Weather: Honey Crop

WATERTOWN, Minn. (WCCO) -- One good result of this year's extreme weather in Minnesota is a bumper crop of honey from local bee farmers.

Brian Ames, owner of the Ames Farm in Watertown, says this follows extremely lean 2010 and 2011 crops.

"We had low yields due to excessive rains in July, pretty much the wrong time. This year has been totally different we had record rains in the Spring, right up until mid-June and now we are in the middle of a heat wave and there is plenty of nectar out there for the bees," Ames told WCCO radio.

He credits a combination of early moisture to get plants growing and then the dry sunny weather for the blooms is just what's needed this year.

Ames warns that one shouldn't expect they will be able to run out and stock up the cupboards with fresh honey. We would need a couple more years just like this one to bring the record prices for honey down at the cash register.

"Honey prices are at an all-time high right now. The world supply is rather low and demand is high. A lot of people are interested in natural foods and had honey is surely perceived as a more healthy alternative when it comes to sweeteners," said Ames.

Ames can guarantee some very tasty varieties of honey, and is on hand every weekend at the Minneapolis Farmers Market to answer your questions and fill your honey needs.

"The bee population is influenced yearly by the spring build up, and this year it is pretty healthy. The quality of the honey is also exceptional this year," said Ames.

So, there is at least a golden lining to all of this unbearable summer heat and it's called all-natural Minnesota-made honey.


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