RAU buzzing for new foodie enterprise

Students at the Royal Agricultural University (RAU) have been awarded £1,000 from the national NUS Student Eats project to purchase a campus beehive and create a sustainable honey enterprise.

The honey will be a small batch, craft honey enterprise produced from a beehive on the campus, ideally located between fields of oilseed rape, wildflowers, and meadows.

Over the past year, a group of students in the Environmental Society have been attending beekeeping training with Cirencester and District Beekeepers and, keen to put skills into practice, are setting up their own campus beehive.

As part of the funding, provided by NUS Student Eats through the Big Lottery’s Our Bright Future Programme, students can take part in a free training session to help them set up the honey enterprise and other future sustainable food endeavours.

Mentoring support will also be available for students throughout the project.

Colin Javens, a student at the RAU said "We are really grateful to have received funding to set up a beehive on campus. Bees are critical insects in our environment and for agriculture in general, so it's exciting to think that the bees will soon be on the RAU campus, busily producing delicious honey for sale to all the students and staff.”

The national Student Eats project is made up of 43 enterprises (and growing) across educational institutions in the UK. Together they have sold over £17,000 worth of sustainable food, diverted over 150kg of waste from landfill, and had over 3000 volunteer hours.

The RAU is already part of the Student Eats project, with the termly Campus Market which is led by students and showcased local and sustainable food.

The honey enterprise is another exciting collaboration between RAU’s sustainability and enterprise projects, encouraging students to develop enterprising skills whilst contributing to a sustainable future.