(AP) You can get your honey from a local farmer, but you can also get it from a supermarket.
Honey is the best source of calories and fiber, and it is also one of the healthiest foods on earth.
That’s because it contains only trace amounts of sugar and is a source of energy that helps regulate the body’s fat levels and promotes weight loss.
TUPELS, Ala., is known as the “Honey Capital of the World.”
In the last decade, TUPels’ honey production has doubled to 6.2 million metric tons and tripled to 10.5 million tons annually, according to the state Department of Agriculture.
There are now more than 300,000 beekeepers operating in TUPelo, according the state.
That includes honey farmers, honey producers, growers, honey processors and farmers.
There is also a growing demand for honey from non-Honey Nut shops, such as grocery stores and restaurants.
But some people have grown tired of buying their honey from supermarkets.
That is why, the USDA says, a variety of businesses and groups are now using bee-friendly honey, including restaurants, food processors, bars, coffee shops and grocery stores.
In TUPela, where most people grow their own honey, farmers, processors and beekeepers have set up bee-based farms that can produce up to 90 percent of their honey needs from locally grown honey.
It’s been a challenge for many beekeepers and farmers to keep up with demand, said John C. Cottrell, who owns Honey Nut Shop in Tupelo.
“There are a lot of people that have been growing bees for a long time and haven’t been able to do the work that it takes to keep their bees healthy,” he said.
TUPLO, Alabama (AP/TUPELOs honey farmer) Honey is one of four crops grown in TUplo County, Alabama, that are not certified organic.
In the past few years, farmers have started growing the other crops, but they haven’t figured out the best way to get the bees to produce honey.
They are working to make honey from plants that are certified organic, which require less fertilizer and less water, and use less pesticides.
The USDA recommends the use of organic materials, including those grown without pesticides.
“People are going to do it because it’s easy and because it works,” said David F. Stahl, who runs the honey business in Tuppo, Tupps, TUps and Tuppa.
“The bees aren’t going to eat it because they don’t want to be stingy.
They can’t digest it, and they can’t process it,” he added.
“It’s the only source of nutrition in the world that’s not pesticide-treated.”
In Tuppot, farmers are growing honey for $6 a pound, but that price includes the cost of fertilizers, water, pesticide and seed.
They also must apply their own pesticides, which the USDA requires.
They harvest about 1,500 to 2,000 pounds of honey per day, depending on the size of the hive and the weather.
“We’ve been making honey for 15 years,” said Dave P. Jones, who farms honey in Toppot.
“That’s why people are looking for it now.”
There are many bee-free options in Alabama.
The state has nearly 30 beekeepers, who are working with a nonprofit called the Beekeepers Cooperative Association of Alabama.
They have established bee-intensive honey-producing operations and also use the state’s only certified organic nursery.
The nursery, which is operated by a local cooperative, has been certified by the USDA and provides the beekeepers with a place to grow and sell their honey.
The association is also working with TUPLO to establish a bee-proofing program.
“Right now, you need to be a certified organic horticulturalist, or an accredited organic beekeeper, to be able to make a honey product,” said Mark L. Smith, the association’s co-founder and a TUPOLO honey farmer.
“With the new USDA standards and certification, it’s going to be much easier to do that.”
(The Associated Press/TUPLOs honey processor) TUPALLO, Mo.
(Reuters) There are no standards or regulations for organic farmers in Tipton, about 25 miles (40 km) south of Tuppots, Tupellos and the town of Tupelo.
Some farmers still harvest bees from local hives, but the state has no such rules.
Some of the bee-approved growers are using beekeepers from neighboring towns.
“You can grow your own honey from any kind of bee,” said Bob P. Johnson, who is an agricultural specialist at Tuppelos.
“But it’s not