POLK COUNTY, Fla. — Bay area beekeeper Alwyn “Oxx” Simenia turned his love of honey into a lucrative business, Oxx Beekeeping.
What You Need To Know
- Bay area beekeeper Alwyn “Oxx” Simenia turned his love of honey into a lucrative business, Oxx Beekeeping
- Oxx, who is from St. Lucia, now lives in Kissimmee, but said his interest in bees started in Jacksonville
- Oxx now teaches others about beekeeping, so they can learn to produce their own honey
“80% of our fruits and vegetables are pollinated by honeybees, trees and nuts,” said Oxx.
The United Nations Environment said bees pollinate 95 different types of fruits, including avocados, cranberries, apples and commodity crops such as soy.
That is just one of the many reasons Oxx says he loves bees.
“The bees only really sting when they’re defending their hive,” he said. “You’ll rarely see a bee just flying around stinging people, unless you swat at them, bump them or sit on them — or you’re messing with their house.”
Oxx, who is from St. Lucia, now lives in Kissimmee, but said his interest in bees started in Jacksonville.
“There was a man I used to buy honey from. He said he was going out of business,” said Oxx. “I asked him to teach me how to be a beekeeper and he said no, so I taught myself.”
That was nearly a decade ago. Since then, Oxx not only started beekeeping and selling the honey they produce, but he also started a bee removal business.
“In America, you can harvest honey about twice a year,” said Oxx. “I harvest throughout the year because I don’t take all of my bees’ honey. Most beekeepers take all the bees’ honey and feed them a sugar water supplement.”
Oxx keeps 20 to 30 beehives on his property throughout the year. He says his bee removal business helps that number to grow.
“You just have to take your time and move slow, especially now that it’s so hot. The wax is really delicate,” said Oxx, adding that a beekeeper can produce about 300 pounds of honey per year.
Oxx produces several different products with his wax and honey.
“I usually make an immune booster,” said Oxx. “I call it a flu fighter. It has pollen, nutmeg, turmeric, anise cloves, ginger cinnamon and cayenne pepper. When you taste it fresh from the hive like this, it doesn’t taste like the store stuff. It has different flavor. You can taste orange, mangos [and] all types of flavors in there.”
Oxx now teaches others about beekeeping, so they can learn to produce their own honey.