Auburn University Bee Laboratory

Our mission is to understand and promote bees through research, instruction, and outreach.

About Us

AU-Bees at Auburn

Pollination

Honey Production

About Us

Welcome! Housed in the College of Agriculture’s Department of Entomology and Plant Pathology, we are the AU-BEES (named after Auburn’s world famous mascot Aubie). Our outreach, extension, and research activities benefit our local community while educating the public on our vital work.

Explore our site, “like” us on Facebook and follow us on Instagram to learn more about us, our efforts to improve bee health and how you can help.

Bee Lab Outreach

AU-BEES booth at Auburn community event

Members of the Bee Lab enjoy talking with everyone about our work! You can find us supporting AU community events like the Sustainability Picnic, Earth Day Extravaganza, and the Welcome Back Picnic for the College of Agriculture.

At the Bee Lab, we also like to host visitors including students, local stakeholders, and international guests. We show them our honey bee hives, observation hive, drone petting zoo, bee hotels, and native pollinator specimens.

The Auburn community supports the Bee Lab as well. The Collegiate Hotel donates $1 for every AU-Bee Margarita they sell to help us with our mission. Members of the community buy our AU-Bees t-shirts and honey during our sales.

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Research

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Teaching

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Team

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Publications

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Honey & Sales

Contact

Geoffrey Williams
Assistant Professor
301 Funchess Hall
Auburn, AL 36849
334-844-5068

Sweet Honey

The amazing natural sweetener & rapid source of energy!

Our Honey

Honey is a truly amazing thing. Mainly composed of simple sugars and water, its value as a natural sweetener and rapid source of energy has been known for millennia.

Several different bee species produce honey. Among the most well-known is the western honey bee Apis mellifera. It’s the only species of honey bee in the United States.

The color, flavor, and aroma of honey are influenced by many things, but most important is the type of sugary secretion collected by the foragers of a colony. Perhaps it is floral nectar collected from plants like clover, goldenrod, or tupelo, or maybe it is animal secretions produced by other insects like aphids. With a bit of modification, both can result in honey!

The Alabama Extension publication Nectar and Pollen Producing Plants of Alabama: A Guide for Beekeepers by Jim Tew and colleagues provides a list of important floral nectar sources for honey bees in the region. Around Auburn, important sources of nectar for honey bees are clovers, Chinese tallow, privet, and tulip poplar.

Bee keepers collecting data

Research

Our wide breadth of research focuses on everything from conservation to kiwi pollination and more.

The Honey Label

What’s in a label? Well a lot!

A honey label provides the chance for a beekeeper to show their individual flare. Some labels are very simple – clean and neat – while others are examples of art masterpieces!

Regardless, the FDA requires that labels communicate the following:

  • Common name of the product
  • Net weight (in imperial and metric units)
  • Ingredients
  • Country of origin
  • Contact information

For more details about labelling your honey, please refer to the National Honey Board.

Our honey label also contains a few other pieces of information…

THE AUB.IE QR CODE & URL

AU Bees label with QR code and URL for more information

By scanning the QR Code or typing the URL into your web-browser, consumers of our honey will learn exactly where the honey came from, how it was processed, and who was responsible, from farm to table. Our goal is to produce a high quality product that you can trust.

THE SWEET GROWN ALABAMA LOGO

We are proud to partner with this non-profit promoting consumption of locally produced agricultural products in Alabama – from apples to zucchini.

ENPP News