The honey and wax accompanied men from the prehistoric times, when men collected products of wild bee colonies; in the antiquity the bees were already kept in hives. In Middle Ages, the Slavic honey was exported along the Golden Path running through the South Bohemia to West, the bees were kept in monasteries at first. Also the guilds of professionals existed – forest bee keepers and processors of bee products - gingerbread and wax producers. Beekeeping was also supported by Maria Theresa and her patents. 150 years ago, the associations were formed in the region working under the Czech Beekeepers Association up today. The Work Community of Langstroth-Beekeepers CZ assures the teaching in the branch “Beekeeper” at the Vocational School in Blatná. In 2017, there were more than 6,5 thousand beekeepers with almost 67 thousand colonies and yield 15-20 kg honey per colony in the South Bohemia. The beekeeping is supported also by the South-Bohemian Region. The interest for beekeeping has been growing, especially among young people and women. In South Bohemia, the bees are subject of research also in Academy of Sciences, at the Institute of Microbiology in Třeboň, at the Institute of Soil Biology or Institute of Entomology in České Budějovice.

In the region, 6 beekeepers keep more than 150 bee colonies, making them professionals. Most hobby beekeepers sell the honey from farm (farm-gate-sale) or they deliver it into retail trade and repurchase. A part of them sells the queen bees and separated small colonies. Demand for those is due to death loss because of an illness called varroose. The market with propolis, royal jelly and bee poison is insignificant.

The information and photos included in this article were taken from the brochure "JIHOČESKÝ REGION, ČESKÁ REPUBLIKA - INTANGIBLE CULTURAL HERITAGE" prepared by the South Bohemian Chamber of Commerce.