Casanova di Pescille owns twenty beehives and our busy little bees make honey, the sweet and aromatic natural nectar which is the prize given to the bees by the flowers for the precious contribution to the pollinating process which enables their reproduction.
The main ingredients are water and sugar (fructose, glucose and saccharose, which are our natural fuel). However it also contains protein (substances that make it possible to build our bodies), very little fat and vitamins (mainly vitamin C).
The bees gather the nectar from the flowers, storing it in a special sack known as the honey sack. Inside this sack the nectar starts to change into honey thanks to the work of enzymes. This transformation process also regards the sugars, which become easier to digest and can offer the body energy much more quickly. In the beehive, the transformed nectar is stored in cells and continues its transformation, losing water. When it is ready, the bees quickly hermetically seal the container cells.
Bees can also make honey from honeydew. This is a sweet substance which they gather from the leaves and buds of plants. Expert beekeepers extract the honey, without killing the bees, from the part of the beehive known as the honeycomb, taking the excess honey which isn't required for the survival of the family.
Numerous wild plants which are part of our marvellous natural heritage owe their survival to bees. Without bees they would be unable to reproduce and would die out. But not only wild plants need bees; cultivated plants also need these insects and it has been scientifically proven that the plants visited by bees while in flower produce greater quantities of larger, more succulent and tasty fruit. It has also been calculated that the value of the agricultural products that reproduce thanks to the contribution of the bees farmed is hugely greater than that of all the honey they produce.
The plants cultivated at Casanova di Pescille that need bees are: apples, pears, plums, cherries, apricots, almonds, peaches, persimmons, chestnuts, saffron, olives, vines, garlic, onions, pumpkins and artichokes.