Over the years, researchers across Texas A&M and The Texas A&M University System have cultivated and fine-tuned countless varieties of grains, fruits, vegetables and meats. By focusing these projects on creating high-quality, efficient, economical and environmentally-sound products, Texas A&M has left its mark across the food industry, on everything from carrots to salsa. The Department of Entomology recently released one of the sweetest foods ever made by insects a few weeks ago — Texas Aggie Honey!
It’s one of the newest Aggie-created foods and how sweet it is: for the first time ever this year, staff at Texas A&M’s new John G. Thomas Honey Bee Facility have produced the first summer crop of genuine Aggie Honey. The beehives were established in March near the 6,500 square-foot facility on Texas A&M’s Riverside Campus. “We had a good year here in College Station in terms of honey-making bee forage,” says Juliana Rangel, Texas A&M AgriLife Research assistant professor of apiculture at the facility. “There doesn’t seem to be a lot of beekeepers close to our apiary, so our bees were able to tap into all the local forage in the nearby land which is largely owned by A&M, so this honey is truly Aggie Honey, made by Aggie bees, foraging on Aggieland.”
Producing and selling Aggie Honey has been done in fun, says Rangel, but it has a far more important purpose: raising awareness of honey bees and the university’s honey bee research. “We want to make people across the state aware that we have a research facility that is working on honey bee health issues,” she adds. “We hope our Aggie Honey project will be a way the public can buy an excellent all-natural product while helping to support our research.”
Aggie Honey is being sold in the main office of the Department of Entomology (Heep Bldg. Room 412, 979-845-2516) and at the Rosenthal Meat Center on campus, with all proceeds going to directly help fund the honey bee research program. Learn more about the honey bee lab.