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Iowa History Daily: February 18 - Sioux Honey Association

Iowa History Daily: On February 18, 1928, the first ad appeared in a Sioux City paper for the Sioux Honey Association. A cooperative venture with a 100-plus year history, the iconic Iowa venture behind Sue Bee Honey started with just five beekeepers. 

During 1921, Siouxland beekeepers came together by each contributing $200 each to form the Sioux Honey Association. Between the original five, the collective hives brought rough 3,000 pounds of honey annually. While beekeeping often took place as part of farming operations at the time, many farmers struggled to get their product to a wider market. The Sioux Honey Association sought to solve the problem.

After a few decades of initial success, the associations sough to change with the times. During the 1960s, the group worked to create a branded product recognizable to customers. The effort resulted in Sue Bee Honey, a product which grew to a place of national respect with legions of loyal consumers.

Today, the Sioux Honey Association has grown from the original five members marketing honey into a cooperative with more than 200 active members, each managing their own beekeeping operations. Many of the operations stand as 3rd and 4th generation family efforts, and the Sioux Honey Association continues to be something Iowans can buzz about. #IowaOTD #IowaHistoryDaily #IowaHistoryCalendar


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