Everything changes . Also beekeeping.

My first impression was strongly enforced by seeinga lot of paper books in Amazon since 2010. Now you can buy 16 books.. it’s amazing.

You can also read about it in Wiki, and recall a great publish : For 1,000 London beekeepers in 1999, see Barnett, Laura (4 May 2006). "Why London's beekeepers are a growing band" .

A very sparse communities of urban beekeepers started their best practice all over the world. And because of it, it’s normal to think that it is impossible to curb this trade in rigid and strict rules.

Also it raining books and guides on how to do beekeeping in the house. On how to save the world .. on how to save humanity with Urban Beekeepers. This creates confusion in the halls of the house of traditional beekeeping associations and also in places of governments.

Behind that urban beekeeping grown and grown so much.. and now it’s hard to think it as a simple beekeeping activity applied in a city. It’s more than this.

Looks to what did OLIVIER DARNÉ in France with LA BANQUE DU MIEL. He broke the immaginary wall between beekeepers and agriculture with citizenship.

Lets discover what and how with a man who has spent much time in this. Antonio Barletta, owner of Urbees ®

G: Antonio . Which was the first colony of bees installed in an Italian city?


AB: I do not know precisely. Perhaps the first urban beehive, at least as far as I know, was the apiary of Professor Carlo Vidano installed in Via Ormea in Turin. That was during the Eighties when Faculty of Agriculture of Turin established the first chair of beekeeping of which Professor Vidano was the holder. An experimental apiary was then placed on a balcony and became a meeting point for the young Italian beekeeping talents.

G: Are there any distinctive features for urban beekeeping in Italy? And if so, how can we recognize them today? 


AB: The only feature is that in Italy urban beekeepinghas yet to start and it will take years to align with the cities of other countries. In fact in Italy when it comes to bringing bees in the city there are still a lot of people,beekeepers as well, against this idea..

G: What is the difference between urban beekeeping and traditional beekeeping?


AB: There are no big differences. The main difference is that urban beekeeping starts at zero and can therefore benefit from mistakes and achievements of traditional beekeeping.

G: Is there a worldwide network? How do you see events like the recently concluded Honey Bar at SlowFood Salone del Gusto in Turin?


AB: There is no real network of urban beekeepers in the world. Surely all can connect on social networks toshare information and make friends. Then there are special events, just like the Honey bar at the Salone del Gusto, where you can bring together all the products resulting from this strange and new activity, and I must say it was a great success.

G: Can urban beekeeping affect the preservation of the planet or biodiversity?


AB: It can, in some ways. It is all part of the awareness of citizens about the utility of our bees as sentinels of the environment. Maybe the citizen, in his role as consumer, can make a change.



G: Basically,can our bees live well and prosper in the urban perimeter?


AB: Bees make no distinction between town and country, if they live and produce in the city, it means that there is nothing strange in urban beekeeping; indeed it is strange that it was not done until now.

G: There are strong doubts on the quality and edibility of honey made in the cities. Can you give us your opinion about that? 


AB: We have examined the honey and found it edible, safe and tasting. Urban smog does not pollute the honey, if anything, are the pesticides that can damage it.

G: Many communities in northern Europe share and promote urban honey. What is Italy doing? Is there a handbook for the citizen?


AB: : Italy is at the starting point. And there is no handbook yet. Perhaps there will be one when the number of urban beekeepers will grow. That is why we must promote more and more this practice.

G: Why urban beekeeping has become so viral? Are there any dangers in this activity?


AB: Urban beekeeping is viral because it is new and brings the citizen closer to nature. There could be dangers like for any other activity. That is why urban beekeepers should have a minimum technical knowledge.



G: Antonio: would you like to say goodbye by telling your most exciting experience?


AB: There are many on the list. Certainly the most exciting waskeeping bees on a balcony in the center of Turin and discovering that the neighbor’s bonsai produced fifteen apples thanks to their pollination. Above all, the most beautiful experiences concernnew friendships that are created with the help of bees. Bees create relationships and opportunities. Small but great satisfactions.


Antonio Barletta vive a Torino, in centro. Con le sue api. Collabora con varie associazioni e con la Pubblica Amministrazione.

Di recente ha iniziato un progetto con SlowFood Torino su vari livelli ed è stato possibile conoscerlo all'evento TerraMadreDay 2014 di cui vi proponiamo un pezzo del suo concept.

Oltre ad aver vinto dei premi come idea di startup è coinvolto in un progetto più ambizioso di pubblicazione di un libro e di un opera artistica di cui non vi svelerò ancora il nome, ma che vedrà come scenario finale l'Expo 2015.

La RAI ha pubblicato un articolo in merito. (leggi qui).

I do not know precisely. Perhaps the first urban beehive, at least as far as I know, was the apiary of Professor Carlo Vidano installed in Via Ormea in Turin. That was during the Eighties when Faculty of Agriculture of Turin established the first chair of beekeeping of which Professor Vidano was the holder. An experimental apiary was then placed on a balcony and became a meeting point for the young Italian beekeeping talents.