Beekeeper Lloyd Spear retiring

lloyd spear honey alfalfa bottle

Lloyd Spear, the local farmers' market-famous beekeeper, is retiring from the retail business, according to a message posted on his Facebook page:

To our Loyal, Wonderful Customers:
I am 73 years old and need to reduce my workload, so I will no longer sell honey at farmers markets and other retail locations. October 31 will be our last day in operation.
I will still be selling bees and taking care of my approximately 200 hives. The honey will be sold in 60 pound buckets.
Thank you, thank you. We have tried hard to offer quality products, and your response has been truly wonderful. It has this decision extremely difficult.
Dr. Seuss says, "Don't cry because it's over. Smile because it happened." Please join me.
With Gratitude,

Lloyd Spear honey has been a staple of farmers' markets in the Capital Region, where both Lloyd and his honey won many fans. Last year in an Eat This! for AOA, Daniel B. talked with Lloyd about his honey-producing process, and explained what set his honey apart from the stuff you usually find.

So... it's time smile -- and stock up.

Other local honey? With the news of Lloyd Spear's retirement, Christina asks via Facebook: "Any suggestions for other local honey retailers?"


Say it ain't so! I've got to stock up on the spun honey w/cinnamon, like enough for my current projected life span. But the man deserves to ease into a well deserved semi-retirement and I wish him well.

A follow-up question along the lines of Christina's -- does anyone know if Center Square Honey is still in operation? I recall the woman had some hives in her backyard on Lancaster St, a block from Empire State Plaza. I used to buy jars of her honey as gifts for out-of-towners as true Albany honey, but I haven't seen any in a few years.

this is the worst news ever. i hate mondays even more now.

Ballston Lake Apiaries is a staple of both the Saratoga markets, and is available at Healthy Living and Four Seasons. Not sure his honey is at Honest Weight, but the honey is excellent.

I purchase O'Brien's Honey...available at Roma Imports in Latham, it's local honey, I believe from Waterford.

I just bought 10lbs to stock up for a bit. My dad kept bees when I was a kid and I'm a sucker for Lloyd's raw honey.. ah.. nostalgia.

But listen, I'm willing to split a bucket with someone (or someones) should the need arise.

In a pinch, I've purchased Russell Farms Honey at the Hannaford near me (Guilderland/Altamont). At the front of the store, there's an entire display of NYS/local products, and a few varieties of their honey is on display there.

Russell Farms is based out of Rhinebeck, NY, which isn't very far away. The honey I usually buy, Buckwheat honey, is maybe a hair less dark than Lloyd's, but has pretty comparable flavor.

For sure, I will miss Lloyd's honey and presence at the local markets.

I just let out an involuntary, Darth Vader-esque "NOOOOOOO!"

What colleen said -- sigh.

I'm with Pirate Jeni. Get 12 people together and everyone can walk away with a five pound jar.

My 4 year old daughter is not going to be happy. Honey sticks at the Delmar market are one of her treasured treats. A crusty jar of Lloyd's honey has been a fixture in my cabinet for years. This is very sad.

I just got back from the Honest Weight with 11 lbs. of Spear's honey.

I alerted one of the grocery managers to this situation and she said that if he's selling the 60 lb. buckets of honey, maybe they could stock it in bulk. So if you want to still be able to buy Spear's honey, let the Honest Weight know!

whyyyyyyy. Lloyd's honey is one of the first loves I found in the Capital Region.

O'Brien's Honey at Roma's is NOT Raw Honey. It's "pure", which is not the same thing. Also, Russell Farms sells "pure" honey in the grocery stores, not Raw Honey.

There is a big difference between Raw and Pure Honey. BIG!

I am truly saddened by this news. By the time I got to the Co-op, all of Llyod's raw honey was gone. Someone bought out his entire stock, leaving nothing behind for any one else! It's just not right.

Anyway, fingers crossed that another Bee Keeper steps forward to take Lloyd's place! His honey will be missed.

So disappointed! I only had a chance to buy it once, this past summer, as I live in Boston. If I had known that would be my only chance, and how much I was going to like it, I would've gotten more than 1 jar.
I will go in on a bucket with you, Pirate Jeni! Unfortunately, I'm not in the area often.

I loved Lloyd Spears honey. I bought two large contIners last Fall and used them up before Spring. I saved the jars thinking I could fill them this Saturday at the Delmar market!! I an VERy disappointed. Best honey ever. And I have had a lot of honey !! He did a great job and deserves a nice retirement. His honey will be missed but he earned a good rest. Thank you Lloyd !,,''

Well it sounds like the honey brought lots of smiles to everyone who tasted it and loved it - including me. I wish Mr. Spears a wonderful retirement - you brought so much joy to so many - now it's your turn to enjoy your retirement -

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