Ben’s Bees Community: Simon Mulvany from Save the Bees
Recently I made a decision, to talk more about the people that make my job pleasurable, passionate and deeply satisfying; it seems important to share these stories in a time where we need to feel connected to one another more than ever. You see, an individual can move small mountains if they set their mind to something. But there is a far greater energy out there: community! I meet people every single day that become part of my network. People that amaze me, that fill me with awe, that make me smile. Yes, many of these are bee people—keepers and enthusiasts and honey-lovers—but also farmers, shop owners, craftspeople, hospitality workers, gardeners, tradespeople, parents, just to name a few. These are the people that make my community; the people that push me, motivate me, make me want to be a better beekeeper and an active member of my community.
So, it’s a great pleasure to introduce one of my absolute favourite people and organisations for my first Ben’s Bees Community post. Save the Bees Australia is run by the passionate, gutsy and determined beekeeper, Simon Mulvany. He thinks outside the square. He seeks information from a wide range of sources. He is a philosopher, a father, an activist. He has the wellbeing of bees always in mind and is critical in his analysis of beekeeping practices. With a huge heart and a straight-down-the-line approach to helping the world’s bees, Simon has proved that fighting for what matters and what is right, no matter the cost, is key.
In 2013, Simon Mulvany’s business—which focused on re-housing bee infestations and swarms—expanded and transformed into a social enterprise, Save the Bees. This organisation aimed to galvanise a community of like-minded people who would put their energy into saving bees from unethical and damaging processes. Simon created a website and media platform. He chose a handful of like-minded professionals who are passionate about saving bees (including myself) to share information, write articles, and voice their opinion in order to fight for the cause and educate the community. He engaged the courageous exposition of Australia’s honey-giant, Capilano, which is a continuous battle in the courts and the community to this day. Save the Bees also set up an online “honey map” of local honey producers and stockists so consumers can bypass mainstream, unethical companies and their bee-related products. And what is at the core of all these activities? Simon’s understanding that bees are central to so many important contemporary issues: organic farming, nutrition, pollution, the environment, education, wisdom, permaculture, and love. Through a strong media presence and unabashed approach, Simon is united people to fight the plight of the bee, one corporation or capitalist ideal at a time.
Simon once said to me, “Bees are medicine for humanity, not only through what they produce but how they live in harmony”. Surely there isn’t a better way to sum up just how passionate this beekeeper is about connecting, educating and building a community of people who care for bees, the environment and each other.