New ordinance seeks bee hives in Appleton

Appleton’s Council spent months agonizing over a proposal to allow chickens within city limits last year and another fight could be on the horizon, this time over honey bees.bees2

Alderman Joe Martin proposed an ordinance change that would allow up to 25 bee hives to be kept on properties with the city’s new “urban farm” zoning.

Specifically, the ordinance is aimed at allowing Riverview Gardens to produce honey. The 72-acres south of downtown, the site of the former Riverview Country Club, are being turned into community agriculture and job training space.

Riverview’s manager Oren Jakobson, a beekeeper himself, spoke Monday about the proposal.

“I have three apiaries near Appleton and it would be important to the food production aspect of what we’re doing at Riverview Gardens in an urban farm environment,” Jakobson said.

Appleton allows bees in city limits already, but only at public institutions, like schools and Lawrence University, where five hives are kept.

If approved, the ordinance would limit beekeepers to three hives per acre and require them to notify neighbors.

— Nick Penzenstadler: 920-996-7226, or npenzenstadler@postcrescent.com; on Twitter @npenzenstadler

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