Permits for Bees and Selling Honey

 

Do you need a permit to keep bees or sell honey?

 

Beekeepers must register their hives with the province where they are kept. Registration is free and it must be done annually by submitting apiary details to the Provincial Apiculturist. This is the only permit needed to keep bees.

 

Some cities have Bylaws that allow beekeeping. Many cities do not allow beekeeping but usually ignore the situation so long as there is no nuisance problem and some cities enforce a no beekeeping policy. If you want to keep bees in an urban area, it is a good idea to check the local bylaws.

 

In Canada a permit is required to move bees between provinces and some provinces require a permit to sell hives or used hive equipment. The apiary act requirements are below.

 

Do you need a permit to sell honey?
Farm Gate sale
s:
Honey can be sold at the door or at a Farmers Markets without a food inspection permit. Labelling requirements vary from province to province but in general the name of the producer, contact details and weight of the honey must be on the label. Some provinces are tightening the rules for food sales at Farmers Markets so check with the food fair organizers for appropriate information.
In province:
Honey that is retailed through a grocery store must be packed in an approved container and a nutrition box must be present on the label. Since most retail stores require a Universal Product Code (UPC) the producer must register with GS1 Canada to purchase a code (one for each size of container).
Out of province:
Honey that is shipped out of province, or out of country must be packed in an establishment that is registered with and inspected by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency. Registering with the CFIA also allows a producer to grade the honey and sell as Canada Grade No 1 honey (#2 if there is higher moisture content, #3 if it is unfiltered, there are wax particles or it does not meet the higher grade standard). Except in Ontario where the province has its own grading system, honey can only be given a grade by producers/packers that are registered with CFIA.

 

Does your city allow beekeeping?

 

Some cities allow beekeeping and others do not. Progressive city councils that have changed their bylaws have done so after presentations by beekeepers about the benefits of bees and beekeeping.

 

Need help with city bylaws?

 

Here are some progressive cities that allow beekeeping, along with a copy of their bylaws. You can use their bylaws to draft suitable set of guidelines for your municipal council.

 

 

Vancouver BC Canada - similar bylaws to other surrounding municipalities thanks to the help of beekeepers in the city

 

New Westminster BC Canada - Bylaws were drafted by John Gibeau who was also instrumental in helping other beekeepers achieve bylaw changes for City of Vancouver, Burnaby, Langley township and Port Coquitlam.

 

City of North Vancouver Canada - provides Hobby Bee Keeping bylaws

 

Maple Ridge BC Canada - Bylaw regulating hobby beekeeping

 

Delta BC Canada - allows 2 hives and 2 nucleus colonies on a city lot

 

Surrey BC Canada - allows urban beekeeping

 

Vernon BC Canada - Beekeeping only on land zoned for agriculture

 

Kamloops BC Canada - allows 2-10 beehives depending on the lot size

 

Dawson Creek BC Canada - allows a max of 2 colonies and 2 nucs

 

Calgary AB Canada - has no restriction unless there is a complaint CBA offers guidelines

 

Edmonton AB Canada - allows 1 hive and 1 nuc on a city lot

 

Saskatoon SK Canada Section 21.1- allows for bees provided that they do not exhibit defensive behaviour.

 

Winnipeg MB Canada- recently approved beekeeping in the downtown area only

 

Johannesburg South Africa Beekeeping By-laws - provides reasonable guidelines for beekeepers.

 

New York City legalized beekeeping in 2010 with guidelines for responsible beekeeping

 

MORE INFORMATION

 

Burnaby BC has an attractive brochure with information for keeping bees in their city

 

 It is important to register bee hives annually. Please contact your nearest provincial apiculturist and supply necessary details.

Register Honey Bee Hives

Contact

British Columbia

BC Ministry Agriculture
1767 Angus Campbell Rd
Abbotsford BC V3G 2M3
Phone: 604-556-3129
E-mail:This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Alberta

Alberta Agriculture & Rural Development
17507 Fort Road NW
Edmonton Alberta T5Y 6H3
Phone:780-415-2314
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Saskatchewan

Saskatchewan Agriculture
Box 3003, 800 Central Avenue
Prince Albert, SK S6V 6G1
Phone: 306-953-2304
Email:This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Manitoba

Manitoba Agriculture,
Crop Industry Branch
204-545 University Cres
Winnipeg MB R3T 5S6
Phone:204-945-4825
Email:This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Ontario

Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs
5 th Floor 1 Stone Rd West
Guelph ON N1G 4Y2
Phone:519-826-3595
Email:This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Quebec

le Ministre de l'Agriculture, des Pêcheries et de l'Alimentation
101-675 Rte Cameron
Sainte Marie QC G6E 3V7
Phone:418-386-8191 poste 302

New Brunswick

Ministry Agriculture & Aquaculture
PO Box 6000
Fredericton NB E3B 5H1
Phone:506-453-3477
Email:This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Nova Scotia

Nova Scotia Dept of Agriculture
176 College Road, Harlow Building
Truro, NS B2N 2P3
Phone:902-890-1565
Email:This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Prince Edward Island

PEI Dept Agriculture & Fisheries
440 University Ave
Charlottetown PEI C1A 7N3
Phone:902-314-0816
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Newfoundland & Labrador

Dept Fisheries, Forestry * AgriFoods Newfoundland & Labrador
PO Box 2006
Corner Brook NL A2H 6J8
Phone:709-637-2070
Email:This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

PROVINCIAL BEE ACTS AND REGULATIONS

Provincial Act

Regulation

British Columbia Bee Act

Policy on Bee Movement

Alberta Bee Act

Bee Regulation

Saskatchewan Apiaries Act

Apiaries Regulations

Manitoba Bee Act

Diseases of Bees

Ontario Bees Act

Regulations

Quebec Loi sur les abeilles

Animal Health Protection Act English

New Brunswick Apiary Inspection Act

Regulations French and English

Nova Scotia Bee Industry Act

Bee Industry Regulations

Prince Edward Island Animal Health & Protection Act

Bee Health Regulations

Newfoundland Livestock Health Regulation

Animal Health Regulations