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I love my job! I got this call yesterday from Russell at UrbanSweet Honey asking me if I was interested in high quality honey made by bees in Vancouver. He prefaced his offer, letting me know that he's only looking to work with retailers that have high end quality products that understand the value the local artisans. It was an easy answer, Russell found his guy.

The product is 100% pure wildflower which is a blend of various plants, maple, dandelion, blueberry and clover. Basically all the various plants you might find in your Vancouver neighbourhood. Russell's bees live near the PNE so this honey is East Van all the way.

Strengthen your immune system

Eating honey from your local ecosystem is good for your immune system as your body becomes more balanced with the local environment as the bees collect pollen from local plants. If you've got mild allergies, eating a little bit of pollen from the plants that give you problems can help your body create an immunity. Tom Ogren, a California horticulturalist and botanist, advocates for the use of small amounts of local (like a few mile radius from your home) to help with allergies. If you have severe allergies you need to be really careful as eating a small amount could cause an adverse reaction so act with caution. UrbanSweet Honey, although lightly filtered still contains pollen, bees wax and propolis, all good things for the immune system.

How local is local?

Bees live in a 2-3 mile radius from their hive so if you want to be truly hardcore, this is what local means to ensure the pollen you're eating is from the plants you encounter. Of course where you live, work and travel affects what local means in this case. Most artisan honeys that you'll find at the farmers market could be local but there are different kinds of bee keepers (or apiarists) which you should know about to help you with your decisions:

1) Migratory - these bee keepers travel up and down the coast to let their bees live in different areas during different season, from California to the BC interior. In this case 'local' doesn't mean much unless you're a gypsy or a rolling stone.

2) Stationary - these bee keepers live and keep their bees in one place, thus local is the radius of how far the bees travel.

In Vancouver there are a few urban bee keepers. Apparently there are bees in Strathcona Community Garden, in addition to bee hives on the roof of the Fairmont Vancouver and the new Vancouver Convention Center. We've seen honey bees on our green roof, so they are getting around!

Top 3 things I love about UrbanSweet Honey

1) The honey is so rich and smooth, the taste lingers ever so slightly and lasts in a good way.

2) Local - as local as it gets, did I mention it's good? Really good!

3) Clean - UrbanSweet is processed in a professional certified food products facility. No need to worry if dem dirty as dreadlocks from the farmers market are getting up in your food.