The Kelley Honeybee Farm is a family operated apiary in Emanuel County, GA. We are located west of Metter, GA. on farmland that borders Jack’s Creek, a tributary of the Ohoopee River which is located just 3 miles to the south.
We are now in our 3rd year of keeping bees. We have our hives in several locations on our family farm located in east Emanuel County. We’ve had our ups and downs this season, but we managed to harvest 300 lbs of the most delicious and beautiful honey that our bees have ever produced.
Our operation is licensed with and inspected by the Georgia Department of Agriculture. Our first inspection was on July 23, and all of our hives received a clean bill of health. We’re members of the Georgia Beekeepers Association and founding members of the Ogeechee Area Beekeepers Association [OABeeA]. In addition, Rhett is a Registered Food Safety Manager with the National Registry of Food Safety Professionals.
In our 45 hives, we have Italian, Italian/Carniolian hybrids, Russian hybrids, Minnesota Hygienic, and some our home reared queens. Though we’re small apiary, we have not escaped the bee losses that have been experienced by other larger apiaries. We lost 3 of the 12 hives we had back in the start of 2013, but have manged to recover those loses and grow even bigger in preparation for the 2014 season.
Our latest venture with the bees is queen rearing. This part of the operation is a joint venture between myself and my eldest son Cordell to produce our own locally adapted queens. This will enable us to have a supply of queens for our own apiary and other beekeepers too.
We are dedicated to Integrated Pest Management Techniques. This means that we avoid using pesticides and medications to treat our bees for pests and disease. Instead, we intend to use proven non-chemical methods to treat common bee ailments. Our goal is to produce honey that is pure and natural.
We are a Christian family and we teach our children at home. Our vision for this little enterprise is that it will be something we can do together as a family and that our children will learn the craft and pass the business on to future generations.
For more information, please call 912-685-6759 or email RhettKelley77 @ yahoo dot com.
Vice President, OABeeA.