Bee Free Honee minds its own beeswax

The honey makers use apples instead of bees for their sweet products

Sanchez explains that what's happening now to accommodate the honey demand is that honeybees are being transported in their hives on flatbed trucks, rented out, and forced to pollinate crops far beyond their normal output or pollination radius. As a result, the bees themselves are exposed to all kinds of unfamiliar parasites and pesticides and in much greater quantities than they would normally encounter.

"Even when a label says 'single source honey,' it doesn't mean the bees have been treated respectfully and responsibly," says Sanchez. "There are other ways and there are other bees. The Mason bee is a more effective pollinator. The Blue Orchard bee is not as susceptible to disease. But these populations don't get the consideration or the publicity because they don't produce a commodity."

As much as Sanchez wants to protect this threatened population, she says the driving force behind her business is her son, who was born with special needs. This factor has shaped her vision for her company's future too.

Bake with it or drizzle it on buttered bread
Katie E. Holm for City Pages
Bake with it or drizzle it on buttered bread


$3-$6, depending on retailer

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"My goal is to create a delicious, fun product that creates jobs, and is part of the overall solution. Eventually I want a solar- and wind-powered facility and I want to hire people with special needs. There are so many ways companies can do good, and I want to be a company that realizes and lives up to its full potential and keeps its promise to be open and clean and honest and give back."

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