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Brockville beekeeper Priscilla Everett’s interest in honeybees started soon after her son began keeping bees on their property. “At first, I was just the nosy Mom having a peek at what he was doing,” says Everett. But, soon, the beekeeping became a family activity, and when her kids left for university, she took over caring for the hives. “I had extra honey and, basically, one thing led to another and I became interested in producing other products from the hive, using their wax — candles, beeswax wraps — and that’s what really took off.”

Everett started Made by Bees in 2016, making beeswax wrap for storing food to create functional and minimal-waste products that help reduce plastic pollution. But her passion is bees and educating people about the critical role they play in terms of global food security. She loves to do talks about beekeeping, especially teaching children about the importance of pollinators. “The mainstay of my enjoyment is definitely the beekeeping part of it. I’m just intrigued and learning so much all the time — they are just a fascinating insect — they are the only insect in the world that produces food that humans can eat.”

Everett has four hives. Each hive has 60,000 to 80,000 bees in the summertime, but they don’t produce enough beeswax for her food wraps company, so she buys Canadian beeswax from a supplier in Alberta. The wraps are individually handcrafted by infusing 100 percent cotton cloth with pure Canadian beeswax, tree resin and organic jojoba oil. Food wraps start at $24.99. Everett says the wraps are easy to make but time-consuming. What started as a hobby has grown into a business that keeps her, well, as busy as a bee. “When I open up a hive, I’m just so thankful to be part of something so magical. I have this little saying that each bee is small, but together, they do big things. It’s also like saving the planet and using less plastic: you think it doesn’t make a difference, but every little bit that we can do is for the greater good.”

The article was originally written by Debra Norton from the Toronto Star and can be found here.