Several families of Madagui’s villagers specialize in collecting honey in the surrounding rainforest. To produce it, the wild bees foraged pollen and nectar of many rare species of flowers which give to this honey a unique flavour.
Settled in the region for several years, we decided to introduce you this product and share the experience of the collect, following a team of villagers during this process.
The work begins well in advance of collect by identifying swarms of bees. For this, the villagers track down the bees from water sources as they come to drink, and then follow them up to find swarms in tall trees, often more than 30 meters away from predators.
Then comes the stage of preparation to collect honey. More precisely, creepers are fitted to allow climbers when the time comes to access swarms.
During the harvest period, which lasts a few months, just before the monsoon, teams spend several days in the jungle for collecting and come back after getting twenty litters of the precious nectar.
Conditions are naturally difficult because of the jungle, heat and humidity. Moreover, the members of the team must protect themselves with thick clothes, gloves and a protection on the face.
To protect against attacks, the team burns some herbs in large fresh banana leaves rolled up to release the smoke. Then, the climber, usually the most agile of the group dashes into a perilous ascent to access the swarm. The harvest is neither destructive nor total to preserve bees from season to season.
On more than ten thousands hectares of primeval forest around Madagui, the production is limited. All of our teams only collect a few hundred litters of honey per year. Wild bees cannot be domesticated and need large trees to establish their colonies. The amount of honey available is indeed related to the existence of the primary forest. Therefore, this activity is directly related to the protection of the forest as it could disappear with deforestation.
The honey we collect is not subject to any treatment or additives. Prior to the commercialization, each batch is tested by an independent laboratory certified in Europe to determine its origin, its pollen taste as well as its nutritional characteristics.
When buying this honey, you buy a unique product. The health benefits are multiple and recognized by both the village traditions and the medical world. Moreover, you take the chance to promote the products of the primary forest and thus, act for its preservation.