Parisian Buzz: Bees in Paris

A couple of months back a stumbled upon a tiny excerpt in Monocle magazine about the production of honey in Paris. I was astounded. Paris? Really?

While living in France my husband and I would always pick up bottles of local honey everywhere we went, but had never run across any from Paris. Honey is a staple in our house, to be served on top of yogurt, spread across a good chunk of bread with goat cheese, or alone, it's a tasty treat.

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We brought honey over with us when we moved back to the U.S. and have been hoarding it like gold (along with our foie gras!). I recently found a hyper-local honey producer who has bees in the hills above Berkeley, Albany, and Oakland – it is very good stuff and I love supporting local growers, but now I am intrigued about Paris.

On my next trip to Paris coming up in the Fall, I am definitely going to be on the hunt for Parisian honey!

While I was doing my research, because I was fascinated by this topic, I found the following interesting facts.

Bees in the city face fewer pesticides and more flowers so they, therefore, produce more honey. A beehive in the country produces 25 kilos (55 pounds) of honey a year, but in the city, it will produce 80 (176 pounds)! Although I started seeing different numbers after reading several articles, you get the point!

The most expensive honey from Paris is from the top of the Paris Opera costing 15 Euros for 125 grams (4 oz). I want to sample that!

Interesting posts and articles I found while feeding my curiosity:

> Honey Made in Paris by David Lebovitz

> Rooftops abuzz with beekeeping in Paris from HuffPost

> Who's Humming at Opera? Believe It or Not, Bees from the New York Times (from 2003 – I am perplexed that I NEVER heard about this before!)

I will be on the lookout for this during my trip in the autumn, and I will definitely report back!

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  1. I remember as a little girl living on our small farm, bees swarming all over the place. They would build their hives on the side of our farmhouse. My father would then call a beekeeper and he would teach us about bees and the queen bee. We would intently watch as he took the bees away.

    1. @JoAnna – did you get to eat the honey?

  2. I hope you can find it! I love honey too!!!

  3. Honey is one of my FAVORITE things to buy in Paris. Love, love it. And it always comes in such nice looking jars. Can’t wait to stock up when I go back later this month.

    1. I am DEFINITELY getting some on my next trip!

  4. Karin (an alien parisienne) says:

    Andi – I’m here today, finally catching up on reading some posts! I think I peeked in on this one when the future MIL was here, but then just last night, I was in the Buttes Aux Cailles neighborhood in the 13th in Paris, and saw a place that connects with your honey pursuits here.

    It is a shop called Les Abeilles and they specialize in bee-related things like honey and beeswax candles and so on. – Les Abeilles

    and then the shop’s English site here: Les Abeilles

    I hope I coded those links correctly so that they work all right. If they don’t, I’ll send them to you.

    The Buttes Aux Cailles neighborhood is really cute — lots of good places to eat or have a drink. It is very close to the shopping center at Place d’Italie, at the end of Métro Line 5.

    I’d add it to your list of places to visit for your visit!

    1. @Karin, Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! I am going to go there FOR SURE on my next trip in October. I just saw one of those food channel shows that had the host going into a store for Maille that was all mustard! My husband and never seen it and we are going to go there as well! Love local specialty shops that focus on one ingredient. You made my day!

  5. Glad to know that I could be of service!! 🙂 And ohhhhh, a Maille shop! I am a huge fan of their mustards. It’s one of the things I can eat, and I now have quite a collection of Maille mustard jar glasses going.