WI State Fair Announces Honey Competition

With support from the WHPA, the Wisconsin State Fair is offering a competitive honey division for amateur bee and honey enthusiasts. The competition will be held prior to the opening of the Fair on Thursday, June 26, 2014 in the Wisconsin State Fair Exposition Center. Award winning products from all the contests will be featured on display during the annual Fair from July 31 to August 10. Competition entry information is available on the Wis. State Fair website at: http://wistatefair.com/competitions/other-contests/.


Deadline for entries is Friday, June 13, 2014. The entry fee is $10.00 per entry. Mail the entry form and check payable to the Wisconsin State Fair. Entries must be delivered to Wisconsin State Fair Park on June 16th - 20th and June 23rd - 24th, 2014.


Using Apivar®? Read the label first

Beekeepers have a new tool in their constant Varroa mite battle in Apivar®, with the active ingredient amitraz. You need to be aware that you may find it with two different labels, and you need to follow whichever label comes with the product you buy.

The reason for the difference is a little complicated. This past winter, the Environmental Protection Agency issued a "Section 18" emergency exemption to allow using Apivar® to control Varroa mites in Wisconsin. In April, the agency issued a "Section 3" conditional registration for the same product and same use, and manufacturer Arysta Lifescience North America Inc. registered it with the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection for use in Wisconsin. The conditional registration means that the manufacturer has 18 months to submit additional data to EPA in order to maintain the product's state and federal registrations.

Each of the two processes results in a separate label. So, Apivar® sold before April will have the Section 18 label, and that sold after the Section 3 registration may have a different label. Label provisions are similar, but there are some differences in language. One important difference is that the Section 18 label for Apivar® has an expiration date of December 31, 2013. Containers with this label cannot be sold or used after this date.

Bottom line – the label is the law. Follow the labeling that comes with the product you buy. If you have questions, you can contact Matt Sunseri, 608-224-4547, matthew.sunseri@wi.gov.

Because Varroa mites are a constant battle, it's best not to rely on only one solution. Integrated pest management, or IPM, can play an important role by incorporating various methods of prevention and control, including non-chemical means. It's important to rotate the chemicals that you do use, to try to keep the mites from developing resistance. For more information about IPM, contact state apiarist Liz Meils, 608-224-4572, elizabeth.meils@wi.gov.