Beekeeping has been our family for four generations. Harry Bohman started beekeeping during WWII out of necessity. Sugar was the first food to be rationed in 1942. The war with Japan cut off imports from the Philippines, and cargo ships from Hawaii were diverted for military purposes. The U.S. government, in order to prevent hoarding and skyrocketing prices, issued ration books that contained stamps that could be used to purchase sugar. Harry was a farmer. He had trucks and tractors that needed fuel and tires to operate. He traded his sugar stamps for others to purchase fuel and tires for his equipment. He kept bees in order to use honey as a replacement for sugar.
Harry’s oldest son, Paul, continued beekeeping into adulthood as a hobby, and his two young sons; John and Joe tagged along and learned about bees. However, during the mid-1980s, all of Paul’s bees died for no reason. Frustrated, he stopped beekeeping and gave up the trade. We later would know the phenomenon that caused the losses as “Colony Collapse Disorder”.
Our family was out of beekeeping for nearly 25 years. However, Paul’s youngest son, Joe, decided to give it another try in 2010 with a half-dozen hives. He simply wanted to see if “he could keep some bees alive”. He managed to do just that, and even doubled the number of hives! One year later, John, Joe’s older brother joined the beekeeping venture and together, they quickly added more hives. The brothers were eventually able to produce enough honey to begin selling honey to local stores. In 2012, John’s wife and sons joined the team as Bohman Bee Company was formed.
Today, Bohman Bee Company owns and manages over 200 hives located throughout southern Indiana with plans to double this number quickly. We offer our honey in over 20 stores in Indiana and Ohio (click here to find our honey). At Bohman Bee Company, we pride ourselves in delivering local, raw honey. Each bottle captures the essence of a certain time and place in Indiana. With the changing seasons and floral sources, each harvest has a unique taste. We bottle that flavor just as bees made it – RAW.