Creating a Buzz for Beekeeping in Northwest Tennessee

The Northwest Tennessee Beekeepers Association (NWTBA) has been buzzing for ten straight years. NWTBA is a non-profit organization made up of sixty members diverse in age and ranging from beginning hobbyist to experienced beekeeper. Not only do NWTBA members care for honeybee colonies, the club also dedicates its time to promoting beekeeping in the local area by informing, educating, mentoring and demonstrating the various aspects of keeping honeybees to new beekeepers, schools and community organizations. They also educate children and the community about the importance of honey bees and other pollinators to our food system.

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NWTBA member beekeepers keep bees for many reasons: to collect honey and other products produced in the hive such as beeswax and pollen; to promote pollination; and to produce bees to sell to other beekeepers. Many members sell honey and other products from the hive from their homesteads and at local farmers markets.

The club holds monthly meetings at the UT Martin Ag Complex in Martin, TN (Moody Street side door). These meetings give club members and any visitors the opportunity to learn from other beekeepers’ experiences and connection to the broader beekeeping community. This connection allows everyone to stay up to date on any modern beekeeping techniques, laws and solutions to challenges.

Since the Northwest Tennessee Beekeepers Association began in 2010, they have inspired the formation of two other bee clubs, the Kentucky Lake and Reelfoot Beekeepers Associations. The club also sparked the beginning of the beekeeping project on the UT Martin campus where students are able to get hands-on experience with keeping bees and collecting honey. Through their many efforts, the NWTBA plays a valuable role in our Northwest Tennessee local food system.

~Amber Graves, LFN Team Blogger
Published in the NWTN Local Food Guide 2020