Selling Honey in Western Australia

Hi all, we have had our hives for a few years now but are now making so much honey we are needing to find a way to sell. I have been doing lots of research but am feeling very overwhelmed. My husband is the ‘hobby’ beekeeper and is just happy spending time with the bees but I need to find a solution for the excess honey.
It seems I will need to register as a food business, I am just trying to find out, whether we need to register as a home business as well or whether I can hire a commercial kitchen to do the honey extraction at harvest time rather than get our premises up to commercial standard (thus avoiding the home business registration).
Also, is there any other legal requirements I should know about (aside from packaging and labelling, I have got all that sorted)
I apologise for my lack of knowledge/understanding - and appreciate any advice anyone can give me :slight_smile:

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Hi Jay, first of all, welcome to the forum.
A couple of things come to mind, Unlike a business a hobby is for recreation or enjoyment and not to make a profit.
I had a quick google and think I saw what you are describing on the WAAS site and I think @AdamMaskew would have a better idea than me but unless you are selling large quantities of honey I wouldn’t consider it a commercial operation. Large quantities are always in demand and you would see “Honey wanted, any quantities, top prices paid” advertisements in the Beeinformed letter we all receive after registering our hives with the Ag Dept.
I sell and gift my honey to neighbours, friends and clients frequently and all I do is write the batch number on the lid.
Sometimes it’s best to ask for forgiveness than to ask for permission.:wink:


It really does depend on the local government, they administer the Health Act. Most would require the food business to be registered, there are different levels depending on the quantity being processed. I’d give you health officer a call and ask them the hypothetical question. At a small scale you just need to register for the processing as you wouldn’t be running the business from your home. Most kitchens or laundries can meet the requirement for low quantities. As can a stainless steal bench and hot water in a shed.

Interestingly they are more interested in the packaging of the honey (20l bucket to smaller containers).

Let us know what you find out for your shire.



I think the last thing you want to do is to let the government have anything to do with your honey, there is too much of that as it is.
Are there local markets you can sell the honey at? If not, perhaps find a food bank that helps poorer people. I’m sure they’d appreciate it.


Our esteemed government is going to have a finger in the pot one way or another.

Food Act 2008 - Western Australia - an exiting reading.

Local governments and the WA Department of Health are responsible for administering the act. So this is the only part that depends on LGAs. Food Act applies state-wide.

Some points of concern:

or worse:

A hobby is not a business and anyone that knowingly sells unsafe food deserves a fine.:woozy_face:

Hobby or not is rather ATO’s area of interest :slight_smile:

The Food Act gives own definition:

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Welcome to the forum Jay! I’m not from around your neck of the woods so I can’t advise competently on the matter, but our California US friend @claire_c “s post might provide a neat workaround:

Just make sure to chain your table to a tree :grin:

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thanks everyone for your help and support, its so nice to talk to people who can understand what we are going through :slight_smile:
Yes, we will register as a food business.
still working out what to do about the operating a small business out of home, but think we will hire a commercial kitchen on processing days rather than do it at home - in the hope of avoiding that particular license!!

Next question - we are also going to get a crown permit to move some of our hives to, they require public liability insurance, having trouble finding an insurer who covers bee keeping. Has anyone found an insurer who covers beekeeping?? Thanks in advance!!

Jay - the overwhelmed, Bee keepers wife :slight_smile:

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Jay if you are hiring a comercial kitchen they may already have the approvals you require and you would just operate under their licence. Or that is how I can do it in a few areas down my way.

You may want to contact Bee Industry Council of Western Australia for pointers on insurers BICWA Home Page Western Australia

There have been a few discussions about who the semi to commercial beekeepers are using. If you join the Western Australian Apiriasts’ Society you are covered by insurances at an amateur level (up to 300 hives) so may be worth looking at that as an option, asking them the question and/or their insurer (AON)
WA Apiarists’ Society - Member insurance ( as membership for WAAS is around $50-65 from memory


Thank you so much Adam! that is super helpful!

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Here is a map of sites locations. Could be useful to some degree.

WA Beekeepers App

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thanks so much ABB - that is gold :slight_smile:

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Hi J
I am looking at selling my honey and I was wondering how you went with your council in getting approved. I am in WA too​:blush::honeybee: