Honey production from producers with five or more colonies in Wisconsin totaled 2.30 million pounds in 2018 according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service Honey Report -- a 23 percent decrease from the 2.97 million pounds produced in 2017.

The number of honey producing colonies in the state decreased from 53,000 colonies in 2017 to 51,000 colonies in 2018. This number does not include producers with fewer than five colonies or producers who did not harvest honey.

Yield per colony in Wisconsin averaged 45 pounds, down from 56 pounds per colony in 2017.

Wisconsin moved to 16th place nationally in honey production, down from 15th place last year.

Colonies which produced honey in more than one state were counted in state where the honey was produced. Therefore, at the United States level yield per colony may be understated, but total production would not be impacted.

On Dec. 15, 2018, producer honey stocks in Wisconsin, excluding stocks under government loan programs, were 711,000 pounds, a 4 percent increase from 2017. The state’s 2018 honey crop was valued at $6.33 million, down 24 percent from the previous year’s $8.37 million. The average price per pound for all marketing channels in Wisconsin was $2.76, down 6 cents from 2017.

U.S. honey production up, but yield per colony down

United States honey production in 2018 from producers with five or more colonies totaled 152 million pounds, up 2 percent from 2017. There were 2.80 million colonies producing honey in 2018, up 4 percent from 2017.

Yield per colony averaged 54.4 pounds, down 2 percent from the 55.5 pounds in 2017. Colonies which produced honey in more than one State were counted in each State where the honey was produced.

Therefore, at the United States level yield per colony may be understated, but total production would not be impacted.

Colonies were not included if honey was not harvested.

Producer honey stocks were 29.1 million pounds on Dec. 15, 2018, down 5 percent from a year earlier. Stocks held by producers exclude those held under the commodity loan program.

United States honey prices decreased 2 percent during 2018 to 216.6 cents per pound, compared to 219.9 cents per pound in 2017.

United States and state level prices reflect the portions of honey sold through cooperatives, private, and retail channels.

Prices for each color class are derived by weighting the quantities sold for each marketing channel. Prices for the 2017 crop reflect honey sold in 2017 and 2018. Some 2017 crop honey was sold in 2018, which caused some revisions to the 2017 crop prices.

For operations with five or more colonies, the average prices paid in 2018 for honey bee queens, packages, and nucs were $18, $86, and $110 respectively.

For operations with five or more colonies, pollination income for 2018 was $302 million, up 8 percent from 2017.

Other income from honey bees for operations with five or more colonies in 2018 was $94.6 million, up 17 percent from 2017.

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