Springbank Honey forced to burn thousands of beehives

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Springbank Honey forced to burn thousands of beehives after American foulbrood disease found

saw this over on social media. of course the rest of the story is not being shared, or at least i havn't seen it.
as afb management doesn't just test supers for the hell of it, no doubt they have found a lot of infected hives or high spore count in honey.
more than likely this is a case of beekeepers shortcutting beekeeping and let afb spread throughout their hives over a number of years (from experience it takes many years to get to this stage).
now its biting them in the rear but they blame everyone else instead.

sadly this is not new and is being repeated all over nz (i know of a couple myself), which in turn spreads to you.
double edge sword here is that its easy for afb to hide behind varroa problems, which we have a lot of. so you need to keep on top of both.
 

Alastair

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I saw a fuller video with him talking about it for several minutes. He told lie after lie, and the general public watching would think he has been treated terribly.

The unfair thing is that because of privacy rules, the other side of the story, the AFB Management Agencies side, cannot be told. At least by them. They are unable to respond or answer many of the lies told. I do not know the specifics of this case, but I do know the guy is telling lies, from the many times he said two contradictory things that cannot both be true. For example saying he had to burn ten thousand boxes (nice round number), then elsewhere saying he had to burn twenty thousand boxes. Which? Saying he had no boxes left to put on his hives next year, elsewhere saying he had to destroy 2/3rds of his boxes. Which would leave one third anyway. Which is true, or is any of it true. Much more obvious lies but I won't go through them all.

It was also in TV1 news tonight, they interviewed him, plus several "experts", all of whom I know and they are all NZ Beekeeping Inc people, the usual s**t stirrers who try to undermine the work of the AFB Management Agency. With it being all over the internet and TV, these people have gone all out to discredit the AFBPMP. Instead, they should be ashamed, for letting things get this bad, and probably costing other beekeepers worry and money along the way.

I don't know the specifics of this case, but I do know that people with 1/2 a days training do not randomly show up at a beekeepers shed for no good reason, and order the destruction of thousands of boxes, with no just cause. Which is what he stated in one of his other videos.
 

Alastair

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Interesting how the story gets exagerated with each re telling. Started out ten thousand boxes, then it was twenty thousand boxes, now it's a two million dollar honey crop.

Sucks how this guy can spread his lies all over the internet.

He thinks he can put the boot into the AFB control program, but is only making a pariah out of himself because most beekeepers know what is really going on, and will be wanting to avoid him and his beehives like the plague.
 

Bron

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Springbank Honey forced to burn thousands of beehives after American foulbrood disease found

saw this over on social media. of course the rest of the story is not being shared, or at least i havn't seen it.
as afb management doesn't just test supers for the hell of it, no doubt they have found a lot of infected hives or high spore count in honey.
more than likely this is a case of beekeepers shortcutting beekeeping and let afb spread throughout their hives over a number of years (from experience it takes many years to get to this stage).
now its biting them in the rear but they blame everyone else instead.

sadly this is not new and is being repeated all over nz (i know of a couple myself), which in turn spreads to you.
double edge sword here is that its easy for afb to hide behind varroa problems, which we have a lot of. so you need to keep on top of both.
Hi all,

Im cross, Daley is incandescent! Please send messages of support to AFB agency supporting them. They are legally protecting this guy by not being able to comment. While sometimes we may love to hate them, they are doing their job & protecting our livelihoods

Bron
 
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I'm only a hobbyist, but I do have a deca. Something was off completely when I saw this on social media. The math of ten thousand boxes equating to 2 million dollars. Or 3000 hives needing 20,000 supers? No option for paraffin dipping for alleged new boxes never been on a hive? His vague definition on clinical AFB ??lack of info on what condition actual hives with bees were in. gas lighting the public into thinking that burn pile was full of bees diseased or healthy. And asking the general, non informed public for help, instead of a trusted and knowledgeable community as this one. The entire thing is fishy. But will not waste my time expressing my opinion on social media as the trolls will eat me alive.
 
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will be tarnished with this for the rest of his career.
which may be short lived.
pretty good guess that they have been short cutting the beekeeping due to drop in sales and/or honey price or lack of staff, which is why they are in this position. good chance they where already going broke and this may just be the nail in the coffin.

sadly this is happening all over the place, and is an excellent breading ground for afb.
 
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Alastair

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I heard an unsubstantiated rumour there was already a bankruptcy somewhere in their background. Just talk though, didn't get anything proving it for definite.

It's also going around social media that they found and took possession of a whole bunch of abandoned deadouts. Only a good idea if one plans to 1. quarantine them and 2. be VERY thorough about AFB checks for the next couple of years.
 
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It's also going around social media that they found and took possession of a whole bunch of abandoned deadouts.
:rolleyes: dumbest idea in history. you only ever get hives that you can inspect, which means they need to be alive.
but i suspect that might not be true. they are organic beekeepers. you don't want non-organic bee hives, which makes me wonder if the story is in reverse.

we have seen multiple crowds who have bought hives, only to find afb through out them. the same old problem, beeks skimping on beekeeping and letting afb get spread throughout their gear. then selling it off.
remember that guy who put hives over the fence from us and they all died. we lost most of ours to afb. he destroyed his hives (so we where told) but he kept the supers, then 4 years later sold them all on tm.
 
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Was pleased to see the news reported a more fair point of view tonight from the management agency with as much information as they could provide. Clarification around the fact AFB had been reported in hives and handled in the regular fashion. Clearly honey had been extracted and supers stored but no quarantine measures taken along the way to seperate infected gear. Could have had more information for the public on just how deviating AFB is and what it does to a colony.
 
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Hi All
I don’t understand why an organic beekeeper is complaining about not being able to use antibiotics.
Lot does not add up.
Suspect this has been very drawn out for AFB agency.
Pity the agency as they have to follow rules - privacy etc while other party is in media without any filter and regard for full disclosure to public or beek community.

There’s always two sides, but we are only hearing what the beekeeper wants us too, and what media considers is the story that sells.
 
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I may be wrong in this but my understanding is that only hives with clinical AFB must be destroyed under the AFB PMP but the agency is also using the bio security act to order the destruction of used beekeeping equipment with a very high chance of being infected. This has caused some concerns in the past and while I don't know every situation , as far as I can see it has only been applied when a beekeeper has a massive problem and has just not been doing the job properly. If you continually take off honey without properly checking for AFB over a number of years then you can expect to be in this position. If you pick up a few AFB from an incompetent neighbour and then find and burn it including all affected gear then you do have a loss but it will not progress to the point where you are targeted for destruction.
The enforcement of AFB regulations is not to punish the affected beekeeper but to protect neighbouring beekeepers put at risk by other people's poor practices. I have yet to read all the articles on this one but I heard one comment made by the beekeeper saying why can't we use vaccination like the rest of the world.
Well, for one there is no effective vaccination for AFB. It is being looked at but to the best of my knowledge has not been achieved.
As for using antibiotics, that is a proven method of temporarily controlling AFB while spreading the spores throughout your apiaries so that you have to treat 100% of the hives And now they are getting antibiotic resistance showing up.
I would be the 1st to call out the management agency if I thought they were acting unfairly and if people can show me this is the case then I would not rest until justice has been done but I have yet to see any evidence ever except for inexperience, gross incompetence or bloody-minded ignorance when it comes to an AFB outbreak. Inexperience is fortunately the most common cause and whith effort can be remedied but the other two lead inevitably to the final resort of a match.
 

Alastair

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Pity the agency as they have to follow rules - privacy etc while other party is in media without any filter and regard for full disclosure to public or beek community.

Exactly.

With all the crap this guy has been talking, he has NOT ONCE mentioned the massive numbers of his hives that had AFB. Clinical. Then goes on about his honey boxes not showing clinical AFB, giving the impression there is no clinical AFB in his outfit.

I don't believe one word that comes out of his mouth.
 

Alastair

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I heard one comment made by the beekeeper saying why can't we use vaccination like the rest of the world.
Well, for one there is no effective vaccination for AFB. It is being looked at but to the best of my knowledge has not been achieved.

Re that. I read up on the developers website. The anti AFB vaccine is fed to the young queen bee, and she has an immune response, which is passed on to her offspring. But it does not guarantee 100% protection. It means the chances her hive will get AFB are greatly reduced, but not eliminated entirely.

Steve from Springfield Honey tries to imply that an AFB infected hive could be fixed by vaccinating it. That is not how the vaccine makers say that it works. He shoulda just got on top of his AFB by burning, ages ago, when it was still a small problem.
 
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......as far as I can see it has only been applied when a beekeeper has a massive problem and has just not been doing the job properly......... without properly checking for AFB over a number of years..............
exactly.
this is why i'm pretty sure that there has been systemic failure for a number of years, which means they would continue to be an ongoing problem for many years to come. people need to realize that this is happening across the country, afb rates have shot way up.
also need to remember the beekeeper is the main spreader of afb. quite often in these sorts of cases, the afb doesn't stop until you get rid of the beekeeper.
 

NickWallingford

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The Biosecurity Act, and the Pest Management Plan that was made with it, were never intended to be paragons of democratic virtue...

Ultimately, just about everything gets back to the responsible Minister of the Government.

There aren't any real concepts of "voting" for a PMP, or the provisions of the Act or Order that might be used. The Minister doesn't have to establish that the people involved with the pest/disease are "happy" with any of the aspects, or whether the people who have to pay a levy are "satisfied" that all is well.

The PMP is ultimately the Minister's device. There will a range of sources of advice available, with MPI providing many/most of them. In the case of the AFB PMP, Ministry of Primary Industries are invited to have a representative to participate in the Mgmt Board meetings. From past meeting notes it would appear there are often more than one - it is *highly* in MPI's interests to ensure the PMP is 'properly' conducted.

But whether the actions of the Mgmt Agency - his/her Management Agency - is keeping everyone happy? Or whether they are being democratically "elected" by the levy payers? No, that doesn't really much figure into it, I expect. Sure, it gets heard and listened to, but I can't really imagine a Minister saying "Hey, wait - I've heard some complaints. Let's have a *vote* to see if the stuff the agency is doing is more than 50% acceptable..."

So when the Mgmt Agency *does* do something like this, with charges of exceeding its authority? I'd be pretty confident that the Minister is aware of the controversy. And I'd be pretty sure than any of the advisors between him and the Mgmt Agency are, too. Any use of what might be considered "new powers" would be examined and determined - and I'd be incredibly surprised if the Mgmt Agency just decided off its own bat to decide to do something radical.

I've had a pretty good look through the PMP's that have been created. The regional plans, run by regional councils, have not interested me. And there are only a very small handful of national PMP's. Some details are hard to determine, but I have found very, very few concepts of voting and elections. In all that I found, the Minister has accepted a management agency as being the best possible to deliver on the PMP outcomes. None of them have a "voted on" membership. Some agencies get complex, with producers voting for a selection committee that then decides the representative for an agency, etc - but certainly never in any case a structure that could work against or impede the PMP itself. The Minister is not going to allow that sort of thing to happen, I expect.

It wouldn't be typical for me to post something that doesn't involve history. OK, our PMP *did* get voted on. It has been the *only* PMP that ever *did* get "voted" on. Something like 70% of beekeepers voted for a Commodity Levy, with part of that levy to pay for our PMP (back then, called a PMS). 70% of the beekeepers who would pay the levy voted YES.

I'd like to hope the Minister remembers that, too...
 
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I bought over 200 hives back in 2018, and stupid enough didn’t check for AFB when took possession. After 1 season of harvest and split, AFB has spread out cross most of my apiaries. Bob was the AP2 who inspected all my hives, and we worked together to turn the situation around within 12 months. Yes, lots of boxes and bees burnt, it was devastating at the time. However, without doing all those, I would be out of business by now.

As bad as my situation was, AFB across all apiaries, the Agency didn’t get close to my warehouse and stored gears. Instead we were working together keeping an eye on the development. So I’m guessing that Steve Brown’s case is a lot worse than mine…..
 


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