Beeswax candle has many health benefits. Research has shown that when you burn a beeswax candle it emits negative ions, which act as a “cleanser” for the surrounding air. Motivation also came when they learnt that the most commonly candle sold are made from paraffin wax. Paraffin is a byproduct of petroleum sludge and can contain up to 11 toxic compounds.
Here is a little dialogue I had recently with Peter, from Happy Flame Beeswax Candlemaker.
Thank you for asking about the beeswax we use and the beekeepers we deal with. As you mentioned, it is VERY important not only to use a natural product like beeswax but it is even more important to understand the processes behind the scenes to ensure the products are sustainable and bee-friendly.
As you know, we live in Lismore, NSW. We gather our beeswax from our local beekeepers in the Northern Rivers. They are based in Lismore, Casino and Byron Bay. There are many beekeepers in this area and the ones we know are all ethical keepers or the old style, family run keepers. These are families who are second or third generation beekeepers that have a long history in the profession and know the key to good honey is healthy bees. Now, this takes a lot of time and effort. For example, all the beekeepers we deal with travel extensively with their bees to make sure they are fed by nature, not artificially . i.e. they take the bees to where the flowers are rather than feeding them artificial foods/pellets. This can mean travelling a day with the bees setting them up in the forests/rain forests for them to fed from the flowering trees. They then travel each day to the hives to check they are safe. When the flowers finish in one area they then move them to a new location….In winter when the cool weather starts, they bring them to the warmer coastal areas to feed. Sounds obvious, but many unethical keepers will let their hives “die out” in winter.
The beeswax is gathered at the same time as the honey. When this is done, the frames that have the honeycomb and honey are taken to extract the honey, but they always leave the “brood” honeycomb (older) for the bees to feed from. This it in the lower sections of the hives. This ensures the bees thrive.
The beekeepers we buy wax from also are very aware of the crops their bees are on. For example, they may have their bees near macadamia plantations while flowering (to help pollinate the trees) but move them if the trees are to be sprayed. This ensures the bees are safe and they do not gather any chemicals, critical for chemical-free honey and wax. The major problems bees are having overseas is mainly due to chemicals being used on crops or genetically modified crops that have been “created” to kill pests, but also kill bees.
We are very lucky to have found our beekeepers. It allows us to create fabulous candles from chemical free beeswax. We know the bees are cared for by ethical beekeepers, working in an amazingly pristine environment… it is all good.
More information and other ideas:
This link to our website shows “how to help bees”, including our offer to every customer of a free packet of seeds to plant in their garden to help feed bees and protect them from chemicals:
Also, attached is our free little ebook about Honey Bees (not sure if you have this 🙂 we give it away. We created this to share information about bees. We feel that the more people know about bees, the more they will do to help.
The following info in on our website- it might add a little more information about what we do in general for the environment:
Hope this helps. If you have any questions please don’t hesitate to ask.
Thanks for asking 🙂