Branches provide the foundation for the state associations and the Australian Honey Bee Industry Council (AHBIC) at the national level.
The branch memberships are composed of recreational and professional beekeepers and usually include some of the most respected beekeepers in the industry. Volunteer beekeepers donate their time and expertise to run branch activities and disseminate information between members and their state associations.
Attending branch meetings will make you feel part of a community, with social events, field days and training days. The branches provide a forum for interacting with the local community and local government on issues of importance to the branch. There is also the opportunity to escalate issues to the state association to harness their power.
As the South Australian association says “The more members we have – the louder our voice”
You may not currently be a member of your state association, but you have undoubtedly been benefiting from their existence. The state associations exist to benefit commercial beekeepers and ensure that beekeeping remains profitable and the wider community understands the importance of bees and beekeeping. The state associations are largely run by volunteers. Your contributions enable them to continue to provide this support and offer resources that may otherwise not exist.
- Representation: escalate state issues to AHBIC at the national level, make submissions to local and state governments and the media
- Lobbying e.g. beekeeping sites on public land, honey adulteration, drought relief packages, pest incursions, bushfire reduction burns; any issue that affects commercial beekeepers
- Indemnity Insurance: branch associations may be covered by the State’s policy or able to purchase a policy through the state
- Information and education: conferences, newsletters, Facebook pages, websites
- Constitution and governance
The Australian Honey Bee Industry Council (AHBIC) is the peak national beekeeping industry body. Members are the state associations, Honey Packers and Marketers Association of Australia Inc, National Council of Pollination Association and the Australian Queen Bee Breeders Association.
AHBIC’s work is supported through donations to the Friend of AHBIC program.
Steve Fuller, president of the NSW North Coast Apiarist Association on why you should join your local branch