Quality Assurance Standards for the production of Jara Honey

Use of the JBA logo by a Jara Beekeepers Association member on a product is a guarantee verified by the Jara Beekeepers Association that the producer adheres to the production standards below.

 Jara hive:

  • The  wooden hive should be made from a hollowed out log split in two
  • The approximate dimensions of the Jara hive should be: length: 80-120 cm, external width, 40-60 cm, internal diameter: 25-35 cm
  • The hive should be made from a tree wood that is lightweight and resilient to environmental conditions, such as Linden tree (Tilia Caucascica) wood or Spruce tree (Picea Orientalis) wood
  • NO nails should be used in the construction of the Jara hive, it should be made only from wood. The bottom half of the hive should have a three one cm holes made in the lip of the front end of the log for bees to enter and exit.
  • The upper half should contain a ‘divider’ which is a short stick which is wedged in the top half of the hive to mark the division between the front half of the honeycomb which is  occupied by the bee colony and  which should not be disturbed* and the back part which is harvested by the beekeeper. The ‘divider’ not only divides the honeycomb into two but it also has a protective function against moths. It is recommended that the ‘divider’ be made of Spruce tree root which has a special smell to protect the hive from moths.

The front half of the honeycomb requires renewal after two years. This means removing the old part of the comb on its third and fourth years and after which bees produce the new wax. In the third year, part of the front half of the honeycomb, which does not contain the brood should be removed, in the fourth year the rest of the old comb is removed. After two years the same process should be repeated. The renewal or removing of the old combs usually happens at the end of February or beginning of March, before the main flower bloom begins.

  • Jara hives which are placed under shelters to protect from severe weather should be constructed from natural material e.g. wooden frames, wooden shingles.


  • Jara hives should be situated in bio diverse environments in remote villages, surrounded by forests
  • They should be situated at least 3km from potential sources of contamination such as densely populated areas, industrial zones and factories, plantations/farms treated with pesticides, highways and frequently used main roads/ transit roads


  • The use of artificial wax and wax frames in a Jara hive is prohibited; all wax is produced by the bees within the hive.

Bee feed:

  • Only pure raw honey is allowed as a supplemental bee feed to a bee colony in a Jara hive.
  • Supplemental feeding with honey of a Jara colony is only allowed in specific circumstances such as severe weather incidents where a lack of supplemental feed would result in the death of the colony.


  • The intervention of the beekeeper should be minimized and carried out only when there is a need for treatment or at harvest time
  • Bees should be treated, only when necessary and only using environmentally friendly substances and approved bio vet drugs (Ecostop, Oxalic acid, Muravinka, Nosestat). Please refer to Bio Certification guideline for Beekeepers for more information on approved treatments.

Special circumstances:

  • Approved chemical substances (see Table #1 below) may be used by the beekeeper to avoid the loss of a bee colony; where bee diseases reach a critical stage and environmentally friendly substances have become ineffective.  This step should be taken in accordance with the JBA and veterinary advice.
  • If European or American Foulbrood occurs, the hive should be burned.
  • In the instances listed above the JBA must be contacted on a case by case basis to give recommendations and monitor the process of treatment. Bee products should not be sold when approved chemical vet drugs are used. After treatment, the Jara hive should not be harvested or products sold under the JBA logo for a period of one year.

Table #1

Type of bee disease Approved chemical vet drugs
Varroasis Varokom, Varostop, Ekopol, Bivarol, Pluvalidez, etc
Nozemosis Nosestat, Bipin-T, Flumisan
Ascosferosis Askovet, Askovar, Fungisan

Jara Honey:

  • Jara honey should not be filtered, pasteurized or homogenized; it may be served as  honeycomb or may be extracted
  • Honey harvest should be carried out in compliance with FS&H requirements which are: keeping clean hands, using natural smoking materials (e.g. dried corncobs), cutting honeycombs with stainless steel knives, using only food grade packaging
  • Packaging and labelling of the final product should be done in accordance with FS&H standards. The label should contain the following information: the name of the product, net weight, best before date, name of the producer with contact information, country of origin, nutrition facts, data of production and batch number, storage conditions, and information about allergens.