Ethical Honey Brands | Sustainable Honey Brands | Carbon Neutral
Wind turbine - producing renweable energy

Our honey comes completely conscience free! A Highly Ethical Honey Brands and Carbon Neutral Honey

25 June 2021

We all understand the challenges that are facing humanity, and one of the most important is what we are facing with our changing climate as well as plastic pollution. As an ethical honey brands we feel we have a moral obligation to do our bit and to face future generations with integrity and to give customer A CHOICE. To that end we have made every jar of our raw Welsh Honey 100% Carbon Neutral. Right now. That means no CO2 emissions as a result of purchasing our raw artisan Honey. We can even work out how much CO2 you have saved the planet with each purchase from our raw honey shop from our choice of raw Welsh Honey individually by logging into your account So how do we achieve complete 100% Carbon Neutral Honey? How did we become Wales’s leading ethical honey brands, especially as a small Welsh honey company with local beekeepers selling honey?

Energy use

All the energy consumed in the extraction of our honey, its gentle and coarse filtering to bottling is generated by our own electricity with solar PV cells on the roof of our building and 100% green. But the daylight is not continuous in Wales so when we need to purchase from the grid we only buy 100% Carbon Free green energy when demand is low – again through technology.

Efficient heat production

But we do need to generate heat. The most efficient way to do this at the moment without breaking the bank is through heat pumps. We have installed this in our new building (that has been over engineered to retain any heat) and it is the only source of heating. We use no gas. We use no dirty oil. We use only green electrical energy.

Green beekeeping

But that energy use is just the bottling side, and in normal circumstances consumes the most energy. What about the management of the bees? We look after our bees using organic and natural beekeeping methods and principles and is explained furtherhere, creating possibly the healthiest honey to buy after rigorous testing honey quality. In terms of consumables managing bees evidently uses parts of many materials.

We have for many years used wood beehives and wood internal frames. These are carbon neutral as not only can they be recycled (on site by our microorganism friends in the earth) but is completely sustainable.

Air source heat pump producing green heating
No more Polyhives

We have invested in the past in poly hives which are made from polystyrene. At the time we thought that these would outperform wooden beehives in terms of keeping bees warm during the winter and thus reducing their stress and prolonging their lives, but this difference was negligible in the long term compared to wooden beehives.

Rather than to throw and fill a landfill we will be using them until the end of their useability, hopefully another 10 years plus. However, we will no longer be investing in any new polystyrene based products out of principle and only get new wooden beehives. This is part of our commitment to the environment both in terms of microplastics and trying not to use materials derived from hydrocarbons and plays a major part in being an ethical honey brands. By using all wooden beehives we will remain on our 100% Carbon Neutral path and continue a sustainable honey path.

What about the bits we can’t do without emitting CO2?

Our biggest annual carbon footprint at the moment comes from vehicle use. Evidently, we use vehicles to get to the bees in places that are hard to reach (intentionally), to manage them, to remove the honey and to get it to the consumer either by hand or to retail. We also have used materials in building a new bespoke facility on an old coal mine, the usage of contractors also considered.

Using sustainable an drecyclable wooden hives

We mitigate our effect of using these carbon omitting resources by looking at what we can do on our doorstep. There is an argument that having such a well insulated building and home will offset future energy over its lifetime, but we prefer to use this to produce an annual 100% Carbon Neutral raw Welsh Honey. So how do we do this? We tackle this in two separate ways.

Firstly, we don’t use all the electric we produce so this is exported back to the grid for consumers to use. The carbon saved by doing this compared to using power generated by fossil fuels covers all the emissions form our vehicle use so we are 100% Carbon Neutral there as a minimum.

And secondly, all the other emissions used in construction, in materials used in beekeeping, to the materials used in bottling such as the glass jar, the metal lids and paper labels, the plastic free packaging have all been accounted for. For where the exporting of green energy is not sufficient we are planting brand new trees on our own land so we can guarantee that the capturing of emissions will continue for as long as the business and land remains within our family. All of these, and many more factors help us be the leading ethical honey brands in Wales.

Tree planting at Cilgwenyn Bee Farm
So what about sustainability?

Exactly what is meant by sustainability and biodiversity? We define it at Cilgwenyn simply as humanity meeting its needs without impacting negatively on anyone individually or anything else on this planet now or at any time in the future, be it 100 years or 10,000 years or 1 million years. It’s not just about CO2 emissions or other greenhouse gasses. It’s not just about environmental pollution including plastic building up in our environment. Its not just about depleting natural resources where it cannot be replenished or will take a very very long time to come back. It’s not just about making sure there is enough social and economic resources available to everyone.

IT IS ALL OF THESE THINGS.

And all of these things play a part in being one of Wales’s leading sustainability honey brands.

What do we do to play our part?
  • By being 100% Carbon Neutral
  • We only use packaging made from re4cycled material and is also fully recyclable
  • We reduce any material made from hydrocarbons, and use wood wherever we can
  • We treat people, staff and customers with care and respect and dignity. We pay a salary that allows ethical choices to be made for a healthier and sustainable living.
  • We help our own communities and teach ex-servicemen beekeeping as a means of coping with the mental scars of war.
Recyclable packaging
What then is Biodiversity?

To us, if it were to be simplified as not to create a book out of this paragraph, biodiversity encapsulates every living form we see today. This is not just humans or mammals, not just living creatures, not even just plants but it includes cell life of all sorts like bacteria. But in terms of biodiversity what does that single word (an amalgamation from two words - biological and diversity) mean to us now and why is it important?

To begin to contemplate that we must understand that biological life on earth is over 3.77 billion years old and could be 4.22 billion. Let’s just think about that for a moment. That number in full is 4,220,000,000 years. If we were to use 50p that are 1.78mm thick pieces and put them on top of each other with each one representing a year, the height is equivalent would not just meet the international space station but go past it 18 and a half times! Its that big. If we go by this year of 2021 to the year 0, that amount of time would fit it 2,088,075 times, and look what happened in just 2,000 years in the UK (Romans, Dark ages, Normans, Renaissance, Industrialisation to modern contemporary technology). Even if we looked at our human achievements in the last 200 years we have come far. But living organisms are so much more complex and it has had millions, well billions of years to evolve. The lessons learned from genetic mutations with each thousand years contributing to different species are staggering and, let’s be honest, not fully understood. To go from single cell organisms to complex life is astounding. Imagine how all these living things have developed, together, and only by living side by side.

A massive change by human force

Humanity however is changing the face of the earth at a rapid scale. So rapid that we are unlikely to not even know about species that exist as they are going extinct, so we will never know about them. After all, once they are gone they are gone forever. Why is this important? By changing even a small sub species is likely to cause a massive affect on us, but we just don’t know about it yet. If we took all the bacteria out of the soil we would die. Why? The bacteria breaks nutrients down. But above that there are larger living creature that breaks larger parts down, like insects do and the pyramid grows. But likewise, without the nutrients being broken down no new plant life can grow. No new plant life no animals. We are so intrinsically linked.

Define for me sustainability and biodiversity!

Just to put us into perspective. By mass 97% of the worlds vertebrate land animals are either human or are kept by humans. But we are just one of 1.7 million species of living things such as animals plants and fungi that we know of. Research seems to indicate that this number is realistically likely to be some 8 to 9 million by some and 100 million by others. And that is not even considering bacteria, so organisms may number billions.

Should we affect many of these the knock on effect to others can be huge, and we don’t even know about it. For those that are familiar with the game Jenga, just take one incorrect block out and it all comes tumbling down. Imagine a Jenga version that interconnects our whole ecosystem of millions of species? One wrong move and it will be calamity. And we seem to be heading for it.

So why bees?

If there are that many organisms why are bees by themselves important? The affect we have seen on a single type of honeybee is noted because we get honey. With honey being reduced over a few hundred years we notice it as it’s a commodity that we enjoy and savour. But there are many factors that affect it. If bees are affected what about insects that we don’t tend to look at? What are the consequences of this? It is hard to tell until it is too late. Many believe that human affect on living creatures have gone far enough that we have entered a period of mass extinction, it just moves slow in our lifetime. Yet in our lifetime it is speeding up.

But it’s not just about bees and honey. Looking at just one species how would its removal affect life on earth? We understand that pollination is essential for many living plants on earth. If pollination reduces so does the number of plants. The chances of different plants change to existing pressures such as weather reduces, in other words evolution slows down. If plants do not evolve they could die out completely. Should that be a particular food we eat, we will eventually die. If it’s for feeding livestock, they will die. If it feeds smaller creatures, they will die, and then we start affecting the pyramid of living creatures again. Prospects are not great unless we actually do something about it, and with food, given a CHOICE which direction we want our producer to give us. Surely food producers have the biggest chance of changing our futures through consumer CHOICE?

Honeybee drinking
How does keeping bees help?

By keeping more bees we are stopping the decline of pollinators. We are making sure that bee numbers are increasing, to an amount that is completely sustainable as numbers have dropped so low even in the last 50 years. There is little we can do to help in terms of rearing and breeding solitary bees and other pollinators. But we can’t rear solitary bees without charitable aid. Sadly, many honey beekeepers do think of themselves as charities and love to persuade people to part with their hard-earned cash for little in return. Beekeepers are not charitable business’. To us charitable is to help others achieve goals not fund their own pockets purely (can you really adopt a honey bee or a hive? Try taking it away and find out what happens!) If you want to contribute to a good beekeeping charity, then do consider www.beesfordevelopment.org.

As beekeepers do not need charitable funding for doing their job, we can instead sell you a wonderful product for you to enjoy, something that is good for you, a plant based sugar and is produced in excess naturally by the bees (if we do our job right). So, to us at Cilgwenyn it is a no brainer in that keeping bees alive and well can only be of benefit to humanity while championing producers to be a sustainable honey brands. Einstein (a physicist not a botanist or biologist) even apparently noted the importance of bees on the survival of human life (but whether the quote is attributed to him is another question!). For all these reason we are Wales’s leading sustainable honey brands and ethical honey brands by being 100% carbon neutral.

Can bees really help against climate change?

The simple answer is yes. It’s not because honey ‘locks in CO2’ but because of their role as pollinators. If we did not pollinate plants, plants would not produce seeds. Without seeds blowing in the wind or carried (one way or another) then plant life would not spread naturally. Should plant life reduce the ability to lock carbon in plant life is therefore reduced. This is locked in by its leaves, in its stems, in its roots and is stored naturally in the earth. If we do not lock in this carbon, as many trees do, they will not store CO2 and therefore CO2 in our atmosphere would increase further speeding up climate change faster, far faster than what our evolving plants can do.

Define for me sustainability and biodiversity!
Can bees help against the decline of biodiversity?

Again, the answer is yes. The same argument as with helping against climate change, the more pollinators are reduced the same will happen with plants. Conversely, the more plants that are pollinated the more plants exist and diversify. The more plants exist we are creating a natural habitat for other organisms to thrive. This is one of the pillars why we feel keeping bees as organically and natural as possible is so important. It’s not just about the food that we as humans eat, it’s about the who ecosystem.

What about how we look after our bees? Well you can read about that here.

Small tiny changes to our lives makes a huge impact, and a small Welsh Honey Company can have a massive impact
Cilmate emergency

We hope that many people will make little changes like visiting our raw honey shop online to ensure humanities future for many generations to come. But its business that make the biggest changes as it gives consumers a CHOICE. Without choice there is little change. Our contribution is to make sure that every jar of raw Welsh Honey that we supply is completely 100% Carbon Neutral, right here at the source, not offset by paying a company to plant trees in land far away where there is every possibility it will be cut down in a few years’ time or even a gimmick for contemporary fashion. This is why we lead as a sustainability brands. It’s now. Right now. We do this so we can help you play your part, conscience free.

Our honey comes completely conscience free! A Highly Ethical Honey Brands and Carbon Neutral Honey

25 June 2021

We all understand the challenges that are facing humanity, and one of the most important is what we are facing with our changing climate as well as plastic pollution. As an ethical honey brands we feel we have a moral obligation to do our bit and to face future generations with integrity and to give customer A CHOICE. To that end we have made every jar of our raw Welsh Honey 100% Carbon Neutral. Right now. That means no CO2 emissions as a result of purchasing our raw artisan Honey. We can even work out how much CO2 you have saved the planet with each purchase from our raw honey shop from our choice of raw Welsh Honey individually by logging into your account. So how do we achieve complete 100% Carbon Neutral Honey? How did we become Wales’s leading ethical honey brands, especially as a small Welsh honey company with local beekeepers selling honey?

Energy use

All the energy consumed in the extraction of our honey, its gentle and coarse filtering to bottling is generated by our own electricity with solar PV cells on the roof of our building and 100% green. But the daylight is not continuous in Wales so when we need to purchase from the grid we only buy 100% Carbon Free green energy when demand is low – again through technology.

Air source heat pump producing green heating
No more Polyhives

We have invested in the past in poly hives which are made from polystyrene. At the time we thought that these would outperform wooden beehives in terms of keeping bees warm during the winter and thus reducing their stress and prolonging their lives, but this difference was negligible in the long term compared to wooden beehives.

Rather than to throw and fill a landfill we will be using them until the end of their useability, hopefully another 10 years plus. However, we will no longer be investing in any new polystyrene based products out of principle and only get new wooden beehives. This is part of our commitment to the environment both in terms of microplastics and trying not to use materials derived from hydrocarbons and plays a major part in being an ethical honey brands. By using all wooden beehives we will remain on our 100% Carbon Neutral path and continue a sustainable honey path.

What about the bits we can’t do without emitting CO2?

Our biggest annual carbon footprint at the moment comes from vehicle use. Evidently, we use vehicles to get to the bees in places that are hard to reach (intentionally), to manage them, to remove the honey and to get it to the consumer either by hand or to retail. We also have used materials in building a new bespoke facility on an old coal mine, the usage of contractors also considered.

Tree planting at Cilgwenyn Bee Farm
So what about sustainability?

Exactly what is meant by sustainability and biodiversity? We define it at Cilgwenyn simply as humanity meeting its needs without impacting negatively on anyone individually or anything else on this planet now or at any time in the future, be it 100 years or 10,000 years or 1 million years. It’s not just about CO2 emissions or other greenhouse gasses. It’s not just about environmental pollution including plastic building up in our environment. Its not just about depleting natural resources where it cannot be replenished or will take a very very long time to come back. It’s not just about making sure there is enough social and economic resources available to everyone.

IT IS ALL OF THESE THINGS.

And all of these things play a part in being one of Wales’s leading sustainability honey brands.

What do we do to play our part?
  • By being 100% Carbon Neutral
  • We only use packaging made from re4cycled material and is also fully recyclable
  • We reduce any material made from hydrocarbons, and use wood wherever we can
  • We treat people, staff and customers with care and respect and dignity. We pay a salary that allows ethical choices to be made for a healthier and sustainable living.
  • We help our own communities and teach ex-servicemen beekeeping as a means of coping with the mental scars of war.
Define for me sustainability and biodiversity!

Just to put us into perspective. By mass 97% of the worlds vertebrate land animals are either human or are kept by humans. But we are just one of 1.7 million species of living things such as animals plants and fungi that we know of. Research seems to indicate that this number is realistically likely to be some 8 to 9 million by some and 100 million by others. And that is not even considering bacteria, so organisms may number billions.

Should we affect many of these the knock on effect to others can be huge, and we don’t even know about it. For those that are familiar with the game Jenga, just take one incorrect block out and it all comes tumbling down. Imagine a Jenga version that interconnects our whole ecosystem of millions of species? One wrong move and it will be calamity. And we seem to be heading for it.

So why bees?

If there are that many organisms why are bees by themselves important? The affect we have seen on a single type of honeybee is noted because we get honey. With honey being reduced over a few hundred years we notice it as it’s a commodity that we enjoy and savour. But there are many factors that affect it. If bees are affected what about insects that we don’t tend to look at? What are the consequences of this? It is hard to tell until it is too late. Many believe that human affect on living creatures have gone far enough that we have entered a period of mass extinction, it just moves slow in our lifetime. Yet in our lifetime it is speeding up.

But it’s not just about bees and honey. Looking at just one species how would its removal affect life on earth? We understand that pollination is essential for many living plants on earth. If pollination reduces so does the number of plants. The chances of different plants change to existing pressures such as weather reduces, in other words evolution slows down. If plants do not evolve they could die out completely. Should that be a particular food we eat, we will eventually die. If it’s for feeding livestock, they will die. If it feeds smaller creatures, they will die, and then we start affecting the pyramid of living creatures again. Prospects are not great unless we actually do something about it, and with food, given a CHOICE which direction we want our producer to give us. Surely food producers have the biggest chance of changing our futures through consumer CHOICE?

Define for me sustainability and biodiversity!
Can bees help against the decline of biodiversity?

gain, the answer is yes. The same argument as with helping against climate change, the more pollinators are reduced the same will happen with plants. Conversely, the more plants that are pollinated the more plants exist and diversify. The more plants exist we are creating a natural habitat for other organisms to thrive. This is one of the pillars why we feel keeping bees as organically and natural as possible is so important. It’s not just about the food that we as humans eat, it’s about the who ecosystem.

What about how we look after our bees? Well you can read about that here.

Small tiny changes to our lives makes a huge impact, and a small Welsh Honey Company can have a massive impact

We hope that many people will make little changes like visiting our raw honey shop online to ensure humanities future for many generations to come. But its business that make the biggest changes as it gives consumers a CHOICE. Without choice there is little change. Our contribution is to make sure that every jar of raw Welsh Honey that we supply is completely 100% Carbon Neutral, right here at the source, not offset by paying a company to plant trees in land far away where there is every possibility it will be cut down in a few years’ time or even a gimmick for contemporary fashion. This is why we lead as a sustainability brands. It’s now. Right now. We do this so we can help you play your part, conscience free.

Wind turbine - producing renweable energy
Efficient heat production

But we do need to generate heat. The most efficient way to do this at the moment without breaking the bank is through heat pumps. We have installed this in our new building (that has been over engineered to retain any heat) and it is the only source of heating. We use no gas. We use no dirty oil. We use only green electrical energy.

Green beekeeping

But that energy use is just the bottling side, and in normal circumstances consumes the most energy. What about the management of the bees? We look after our bees using organic and natural beekeeping methods and principles and is explained further here, creating possibly the healthiest honey to buy after rigorous testing honey quality. In terms of consumables managing bees evidently uses parts of many materials.

We have for many years used wood beehives and wood internal frames. These are carbon neutral as not only can they be recycled (on site by our microorganism friends in the earth) but is completely sustainable.

Using sustainable an drecyclable wooden hives

We mitigate our effect of using these carbon omitting resources by looking at what we can do on our doorstep. There is an argument that having such a well insulated building and home will offset future energy over its lifetime, but we prefer to use this to produce an annual 100% Carbon Neutral raw Welsh Honey. So how do we do this? We tackle this in two separate ways.

Firstly, we don’t use all the electric we produce so this is exported back to the grid for consumers to use. The carbon saved by doing this compared to using power generated by fossil fuels covers all the emissions form our vehicle use so we are 100% Carbon Neutral there as a minimum.

And secondly, all the other emissions used in construction, in materials used in beekeeping, to the materials used in bottling such as the glass jar, the metal lids and paper labels, the plastic free packaging have all been accounted for. For where the exporting of green energy is not sufficient we are planting brand new trees on our own land so we can guarantee that the capturing of emissions will continue for as long as the business and land remains within our family. All of these, and many more factors help us be the leading ethical honey brands in Wales.

Recyclable packaging
What then is Biodiversity?

To us, if it were to be simplified as not to create a book out of this paragraph, biodiversity encapsulates every living form we see today. This is not just humans or mammals, not just living creatures, not even just plants but it includes cell life of all sorts like bacteria. But in terms of biodiversity what does that single word (an amalgamation from two words - biological and diversity) mean to us now and why is it important?

To begin to contemplate that we must understand that biological life on earth is over 3.77 billion years old and could be 4.22 billion. Let’s just think about that for a moment. That number in full is 4,220,000,000 years. If we were to use 50p that are 1.78mm thick pieces and put them on top of each other with each one representing a year, the height is equivalent would not just meet the international space station but go past it 18 and a half times! Its that big. If we go by this year of 2021 to the year 0, that amount of time would fit it 2,088,075 times, and look what happened in just 2,000 years in the UK (Romans, Dark ages, Normans, Renaissance, Industrialisation to modern contemporary technology). Even if we looked at our human achievements in the last 200 years we have come far. But living organisms are so much more complex and it has had millions, well billions of years to evolve. The lessons learned from genetic mutations with each thousand years contributing to different species are staggering and, let’s be honest, not fully understood. To go from single cell organisms to complex life is astounding. Imagine how all these living things have developed, together, and only by living side by side.

A massive change by human force

Humanity however is changing the face of the earth at a rapid scale. So rapid that we are unlikely to not even know about species that exist as they are going extinct, so we will never know about them. After all, once they are gone they are gone forever. Why is this important? By changing even a small sub species is likely to cause a massive affect on us, but we just don’t know about it yet. If we took all the bacteria out of the soil we would die. Why? The bacteria breaks nutrients down. But above that there are larger living creature that breaks larger parts down, like insects do and the pyramid grows. But likewise, without the nutrients being broken down no new plant life can grow. No new plant life no animals. We are so intrinsically linked.

Honeybee drinking
How does keeping bees help?

By keeping more bees we are stopping the decline of pollinators. We are making sure that bee numbers are increasing, to an amount that is completely sustainable as numbers have dropped so low even in the last 50 years. There is little we can do to help in terms of rearing and breeding solitary bees and other pollinators. But we can’t rear solitary bees without charitable aid. Sadly, many honey beekeepers do think of themselves as charities and love to persuade people to part with their hard-earned cash for little in return. Beekeepers are not charitable business’. To us charitable is to help others achieve goals not fund their own pockets purely (can you really adopt a honey bee or a hive? Try taking it away and find out what happens!) If you want to contribute to a good beekeeping charity, then do consider www.beesfordevelopment.org.

As beekeepers do not need charitable funding for doing their job, we can instead sell you a wonderful product for you to enjoy, something that is good for you, a plant based sugar and is produced in excess naturally by the bees (if we do our job right). So, to us at Cilgwenyn it is a no brainer in that keeping bees alive and well can only be of benefit to humanity while championing producers to be a sustainable honey brands. Einstein (a physicist not a botanist or biologist) even apparently noted the importance of bees on the survival of human life (but whether the quote is attributed to him is another question!). For all these reason we are Wales’s leading sustainable honey brands and ethical honey brands by being 100% carbon neutral.

Can bees really help against climate change?

The simple answer is yes. It’s not because honey ‘locks in CO2’ but because of their role as pollinators. If we did not pollinate plants, plants would not produce seeds. Without seeds blowing in the wind or carried (one way or another) then plant life would not spread naturally. Should plant life reduce the ability to lock carbon in plant life is therefore reduced. This is locked in by its leaves, in its stems, in its roots and is stored naturally in the earth. If we do not lock in this carbon, as many trees do, they will not store CO2 and therefore CO2 in our atmosphere would increase further speeding up climate change faster, far faster than what our evolving plants can do.

Cilmate emergency