Горный алтайский мед
Beekeeping in the Altai Mountains is a tradition that dates back for generations. The peculiarity of the local mountain honey is that it is produced only with wild plants in an ecologically clean area, about 2000 meters above sea level, with a particular microclimate. Altai Mountain honey is usually multi-floral, with the main plants including: Rhaponticum carthamoides, acacia, Rhaponticum carthamoides, Rhodiola rosea, hawthorn, Pentaphylloides fruticosa, bird cherry, honeysuckle, Ziziphora, meadowsweet, Phacelia, oregano. Crystallization of the honey is fine-grained, but it remains liquid for quite long time. Depending on the prevailing plants the color of the honey can range from white to dark brown.
The predominant species of bees in the area is the Central Russian. This bee population was brought to the Altai region in the second half of the 18th century, and since the local bee has been adapting to the local conditions. The Altai population of the Central Russian bee is darker and a bit bigger than others. It has undergone a long-term, natural selection in the harsh Siberian conditions. Honeybees boast exceptional characteristics such as winter resistance (they stay 6-7 months in the hey for the winter), high productivity and the fertility of queens.
About 4000 kg of authentic Altai Mountain honey is produced annually, and celebrated during the honey festivals of Gorno-Altajsk and Barnaul, where it can be bought directly from producers. However, the amount of honey falsely labeled as Altai honey is ten times higher than the actual regional production. Much of this falsely labeled honey is of low quality, imported from China or other areas of Russia, creating unfair competition for the producers of the authentic product from Central Russian bees and wild mountain plants.