Criminal Gangs Are Stealing Beehives Now - Geek.com

Man, bees just cannot catch a break these days. As if it wasn’t bad enough that they’re not being killed off by horrible diseases or neonicotinoids, now criminal gangs are stealing their homes/workplaces.

Over in New Zealand, beehive thefts have become a very real problem. In the final six months on 2016, there were more than 400 complaints filed with police. The honey business has booming in Australia and New Zealand for the past few years, thanks to the delicious Manuka variety their bees produce.

Sales grew nearly 50% last year to just shy of $300 million. That’s not chump change, and economists aren’t the only people that take notice when profits soar. Criminals could be out stealing pretty much any other commodity, but clearly these enterprising types are looking at the big picture. It’s sort of a “steal honey, make money for a day, steal the bees, make money for a lifetime” situation.

Criminal Gangs Are Stealing Beehives Now - Geek.com

One New Zealand apiarist who runs an operation with nearly 3,000 hives told Reuters he was having one or two hives stolen every week. That may have you wondering how much could a box full of bees really be worth. Try around $1,390 U.S. dollars right now, what with Manuka honey selling for as much as $105 per kilogram.

Law enforcement officials went on record as saying that no connection to a specific criminal gang has been made yet, but notes that these appear to be orchestrated incidents perpetrated by a group. Which sort of sounds like the general description of “organized crime.”

Criminal Gangs Are Stealing Beehives Now – Geek.com

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