The Hantz family has been producing honey at Lakeside in Canterbury since 1951. Barry Hantz joined the apiary in 2001 and now, with 13 employees and 3500 hives in operation across the region, he says the business is a hive of activity.
The biggest growth over the last 15 years has been in pollination work. When Barry started, the business was shifting 200 hives a year, now it shifts about 2,000 for radish and carrot seed pollination and a further 700 go into blackcurrant orchards.
One of the main concerns is American foulbrood. Barry says Canterbury is a major hotspot for the disease and, if an infected hive is found, it has to be burnt.