Apicoltura Cristofori Mauro Tour Review – Meeting a Beekeepers’ Beekeeper

You'll see this photo on the office wall, which we were amazed to learn is a REAL number put on the bee to keep track of it


They sell about 5,000 a year.  Each is numbered and color-coded.   They are queens, each taking 16 days to be born, as opposed to their drone brothers who take 20 days.  Apicoltura Cristofori Mauro supplies these queens to beekeepers throughout Europe.


We mistakenly thought that the colorful decorations on the hives were just signs of abundant art instincts. Actually, they are more importantly visual clues to the bees as to which hive is which so they can get safely home


Visit Apicoltura Cristofori Mauro and you get a fascinating window into the workings of the honey industry and a refresher course on the story of honey that you learned in elementary school.


Mauro, a beekeeper in Veneto, came to Vinci in 1990 because the weather there is better for bees. 


Mauro shows us a queen one day from being born, and explains that his peeling away the husk that surround her won't hurt her or prevent her birth


Chestnut trees and acacia in the mountains and more help them produce specialty honeys each year and always the milleflore (thousand flowers) variety.  


David shows us a comb where they can place royal jelly to feed the queen bees


The modest looks of this father and son (Davide) operation may be a bit misleading.  Although they have no website nor other marketing materials and the honey making plant looks small, this is a thriving business that touches many of the honey operation in Europe through their queen cultivation and also export of actual hives of Italian Ligustica bees. 


(right) Mauro and (left) his son Davide


Year-round they tend to 600 hives, each with about 70,000 bees within.  Honey production begins about May and ends sometime in July. 


Take time to visit the donkeys when you take a tour


Organic shops also sell their royal jelly and pollen.


One of the farm's products is bee pollen


Bees go through these holes and the pollen is scraped off


Although their usual visitors are school groups, this small family operation feels very friendly and with advance scheduling will welcome you too in their doors. 


Apicoltura Cristofori Mauro

Via Casanova, 12

50059 Vinci (FI) Italia


(+39) 0571 56542


[email protected]



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