PORTLAND, Ore. — New Seasons Market has installed two honeybee colonies in rooftop beehives at its store in Happy Valley, Ore.
Honey produced by the 50,000 bees will eventually be sold in New Seasons’ stores.
The declining bee population nationwide was part of the retailer’s motivation for keeping bees.
“As a kid, I grew up with bee boxes in my back yard, tending bees and harvesting honey, and many of New Seasons’ staff have worked on farms or their parents were farmers,” Mark Feuerborn, manager of the Happy Valley New Seasons Market, said in a statement. “The rapid decline of honeybees concerns us all, and it’s a problem for our growers and local gardeners. We want to make sure our favorite foods can still make it to the table, and this gives us new way to support local growers.”
A New Seasons staff member, and amateur beekeeper, will tend the bees with assistance from the owner of a local artisanal honey business.
If the bee colonies prove successful in Happy Valley, the retailer will add two more hives at another store this spring.