High up in the hills of Lombardy, south of Milan, are 400 bee hives dotted around fields, woodlands and edging vineyards. They belong to siblings Michela and Paolo who for the past ten years have created a life in the countryside of Lombardy in northern Italy looking after bees, showing a sincere love and caring of their bees. They produce some 4 tonnes of honey a year and just 20 kg of Royal Jelly, the special food for queens.
Bee populations around the world are collapsing under pressure from climate change, insecticides, viruses and the parasitic varroa mite. So bee keepers such as Michela are vital to support a healthy global environment and its biodiversity. Honey is also a delicious crop, very versatile in cooking and also eaten straight out of the jar with a spoon.
The Covid-19 pandemic has kept people away from the countryside and from disturbing their lives, says Michela and the noticable decrease in air pollution has seen flowers bloom stronger than ever and in great numbers. “It’s been a good time from bees, and nature,” says Michela.