Abeille de Ré: artisanal honey production, beehive products shop on the Ile de Ré

Loix
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Abeille de Ré: artisa ...

Let's go to the Ile de Ré, to meet the Abeille de Ré, a company specializing in artisan beekeeping and bee products. Good local honey, available in 7 varieties, each more tasty than the next, for lovers of honey and local artisan specialties. Honey producer in Charente Maritime since 2012, the Abeille de Ré is a honey farm, but not only that, you will also learn the life cycle of a bee, its hard work to produce this liquid full of sugar, health and greedy, and all the operations necessary to go from nectar to yellow gold!


Photos of the article © Abeille de Ré


To know everything about Abeille de Ré, the best thing is to watch their magnificent presentation video!


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Artisanal beekeeping on the Ile de Ré, a profession, a passion

Aldo François knows hives and bees well, he worked with them all his childhood. However, he was destined for another profession: in 2012, he became a baker, but fate played a funny trick on him: he contracted an allergy to flour... It was then that he returned to his childhood loves and decided to take advantage of the floral and arboreal diversity of Charente Maritime, by becoming an artisan beekeeper. At the beginning, it is an idea which revolves mainly around honey, but quickly, the small team of Abeille de Ré realizes that the hive is a whole universe and a fantastic variation of quality products, in the air time. Everything is good in the hive, thank you bees! Today, the Abeille de Ré has 250 beehives on the Ile de Ré and 650 on the mainland, a processing laboratory in Loix and a shop / discovery center.

Hives are like flocks of sheep: in the spring season, they migrate. Because to benefit from different flavors of honey, we will move them with all respect (at night), to strategic places to allow them to forage on the flowers of a field (rapeseed or sunflower), a forest (chestnut , acacia or fir). This is how we proceed to have honey of a particular species. For spring honey, summer honey or all-flower honey, the hives are left in place and the bees forage on the flowers as they hatch, expanding their radius of action if necessary. The season for the harvest and the transhumance of the hives is from April to October.


Re-harvest honey bee

Harvesting honey: Abeille de Ré takes care of everything, from setting up the hives to distribution, including processing, packaging...

Bee of Ré

Beehives in the middle of nature
A team dedicated to the production of honey and its derivatives, but also to the sharing of knowledge in an educational way around the world of bees!

Understanding bees and buying honey on the Ile de Ré

L'Abeille de Ré has a very nice shop in Loix, where you can find the honeys produced in the hives managed by the small team of beekeepers. As you can see, they crisscross the department and other places in the Nouvelle Aquitaine region, to take care of the bees , check the beehives and collect honey. However, there are a few beehives near the shop and this is an opportunity to make educational visits, supported by interpretation panels placed in the shop. So you can buy honey on the Ile de Ré, but also understand and learn how bees make honey. For children, specific workshops, adapted to young audiences are offered (see the website (in french) and Facebook page of l'Abeille de Ré to find out more).


The Abeille de Ré honey comes in 7 varieties, available depending on the season and the harvest:

  • Flower honey from the Ile de Ré: On the Ile de Ré, there are marsh flowers, ornamental flowers and wild flowers. Honey is characterized by a tangy taste, which is due to the sea spray. A very pleasant little extra on the palate.

  • Acacia honey: it is a sweet, very delicate and fine honey, it is appreciated by children.

  • Spring honey is harvested after the first blooms (rapeseed and hawthorn mainly), it is fresh in the mouth and flowery. It is often creamy, because the nectar of the foraged flowers is loaded with glucose, which makes the honey crystallize, it is a completely natural process !

  • Summer honey comes mainly from sunflowers, it is fragrant and sometimes yellow and translucent.

  • Forest honey: Mainly chestnut and oak, it is rather brown with a rich and powerful taste. It is the honey of lovers of this true characteristic taste of honey.

  • Wildflower honey: It is fruity and delicate, it is a tasting honey.

  • All-flower honey: It is a poly-floral honey, the one that is most frequently found and which is different depending on the time of harvest and where the hives are located.

Bee of Ré

The Bees are the real stars of the company, they are pampered as it should be

Bee of Ré   Bee of Ré

Bees make honey, it's their food that's why when harvesting, we do not take all the honey to allow them to continue to feed the hive

Bee of Ré

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Other bee products

In the Abeille de Ré store, you can get to know an impressive demonstration of everything you can do with bee products: flavoring products, giving texture and flavor, processing, making objects...


The Abeille de Ré store

The Boutique de l'Abeille de Ré, deployed in a trade fair


The benefits of royal jelly, this dietary supplement that strengthens the immune system, are well known. Bees produce royal jelly from flower nectar, but with a specific gland. This precious liquid, which is produced only in very small quantities, is used to feed bee larvae, during the first 3 days of their life, as well as queens, exclusively. Very nourishing, it is thanks to royal jelly that the queen develops a more prominent abdomen, which makes her fertile. You can find pure royal jelly in the Abeille de store, as well as cures with other products to create preparations full of vitamins. Perfect for the offseason!


Products derived from the beehive
Products derived from the beehive

Propolis and pollen are other health derivatives to discover. Propolis is not produced directly by bees, but processed and used by these pollinating insects. They collect it from the flower buds and use it to clean their wings and plug gaps in the hive. It is an antiseptic, an antifungal and a natural antibiotic, very effective against many ailments, especially of the respiratory system. It is a complex substance, used internally (in cure or during illness) but also externally. Find the Propolia range in the Abeille de Ré boutique, which offers a whole range of propolis-based presentations, to heal yourself (mother tincture, gum, syrups, spray, infusion), take care of your skin (cream, soap, balm...). Advice will be given to you in store, to choose the best product for you!

Other products can be found in the store: a beer resulting from a partnership with a local craft brewery, a honey jam, soft and creamy caramels, very gentle artisanal soaps for the skin, candles made with wax from beehives, original planting cards with very pretty designs, gourmet candies, soft nougat made by specialists in the subject in Montélimar (with honey from l'Abeille de Ré), vinegar and mead specially prepared at from an ancestral recipe.


Bee candles by Ré

The candles are handmade with beehive wax

Bee of Ré
Good vinegars, sweet and flavored

Sponsor hives and bees!

This is a good idea, initiated by l'Abeille de Ré, for professionals and individuals. Sponsoring a beehive means investing in the development of a local economy that benefits the environment. It is an original but also delicious gift: the sponsors receive, depending on the amount invested, jars of honey as a token of thanks from l'Abeille de Ré. For professionals, this is the opportunity to carry out a business transaction with regard to their employees or their customers. The Abeille de Ré can drop off hives and take care of their maintenance (within a certain radius around Charente Maritime, to be seen on a case-by-case basis) or simply send you mini jars of honey for your clients or employees! A bright and resolutely committed idea, when we know the situation of bee populations and their importance within our ecosystem.

Honey and the other products and objects sold by l'Abeille de Ré can be found at the Loix store , but also on the markets during the summer season. On your next trip to the Ile de Ré, take the opportunity to come and see them and bring back in your suitcases a little of the work of the bees in this magnificent region. A holiday souvenir to spread on a slice of bread!


Sponsor a beehive   Bee of Ré
Sponsor a beehive!


Bee stand of Ré
A Bee Stand by Ré

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