Why we keep bees in Toronto
Because the future depends on sustainable agriculture.
How we do it
Our honeybee hives are kept in back yards and on rooftops in Toronto. They are cared for by urban Registered Beekeepers using sustainable organic methods.
Think Global. Bee Local.
Meet the founder: Joseph Curry
I grew up on a farm north of the city where an old beekeeper, David Kane, kept hives at the back of our property in a small meadow tucked inside a cedar forest. From as early as I can remember, whenever he would come to tend the bees I would tag along and watch. He had the patience of a saint: I had a million and one questions and he always took the time to indulge my curiosity. He taught me about honeybee biology, behaviour, and what it meant to take care of the bees. He was gentle and calm, working the bees without a veil or gloves. That bee yard was a magical place, especially when I got to peek inside the hives. I was hooked. I bought my first hives from him when I was 16 years old, and I've been keeping bees ever since. My first job was working as an Apiary Technician for Chatsworth Honey, a commercial beekeeping operation that manages about 800 hives.
I have since moved to the city and now work in the Financial District, but I've always been passionate about local sustainable agriculture, growing food in planters on my balcony whenever I can. It struck me that I should bring my bees into the city too, and in 2016 I started my first urban hives in Willowdale neighbourhood, launching Bee Local 416. One of the things I enjoy most about urban beekeeping is getting to know all the incredible people who host our hives across the city. Sometimes, as we discuss honeybee biology or behaviour, I like to think that I'm passing on some of the wisdom of David Kane, and the generation of beekeepers I learned the craft from. - JC