As we bid farewell to 2023, we are taking the opportunity to reflect on the experiences that shaped the past twelve months. This year has been a big one for our team, defined by a strict development roadmap, hard deadlines, and laser focus. To say this year has been a rollercoaster ride may be an understatement.
Working version of generation 6 combs
This year saw the working version of the generation 6 comb design. With this generation, our goal was to make the frames and combs more economical and ensure they could withstand the rigors of commercial beekeeping while still being as simple as possible. Central to this design was the development of a plastic foundation that featured an embedded heating wire with aluminium foil mat. This not only strengthened the foundation but also facilitated more consistent and uniform heat distribution. The incorporation of a temperature sensor has also laid the groundwork for better regulation and increased efficiency against Varroa.
Kick off of Canadian trials with a whole production
The focus of this year was in preparing for our large scale commercial trials in Canada. No small undertaking, this trial required production and operational procedures to be established. After finalising the generation 6 comb design, the first step occurred in April, where we produced and delivered 3000 combs to Alberta. After a successful summer, the frames have been drawn out and are awaiting placement in the new Vatorex hives in April 2024.
Setting up our own trials in New Zealand
If one season per year is not enough, let’s add another one. Not to ever shy away from a challenge, our team set up a preliminary trial in New Zealand this November. This trial would serve as a fine tuning exercise and allow us to work out any potential installation and logistical interruptions before the next phase of the commercial Alberta trials in Spring 2024. It also enables us to take advantage of the southern hemispheres spring and summer seasons. To kick off this trial, we sent our team and assembled 90 hives and 600 combs for use in Waiau, north of Christchurch.
Read more about the trip in this article.
The year has been a testament to hard work of our team members and support of the community around us. For that we would like to extend our sincerest thanks, and we are excited to make the next year just as impactful.