Apiculture in Slovenia has a long standing tradition. Johann Weikhard von Valvasor mentioned people keeping their bees in small houses in his "The Glory of the Duchy of Carniola". The oldest records of apiculturists migrating their colonies are more than 300 years old. This shows two things: 1) beekeepers followed the flow closely and 2) the profit was great enough to install the colonies in the forests in somebody-elses private hands.
Apiculture in Slovenia is, in stark contrast with many other countries, considered as a sub-sector of animal production, rather than plant production. While pollination is important in every agriculture, only 5 - 6 % of cultivated plants in Slovenia require pollination. There are more than 200.000 managed honey bee colonies recorded in Slovenia's 20.000 km2 of surface. Consequently, beekeeping seem to be more interesting for honey bee products rather to support the crop.
Also, our major single-source honeys have their origin in several tree species, not in agricultural crops. The exception is buckwheat whose market share is negligible. The oilseed rape, so important in other European and non-European countries, is used mostly to build-up the colonies before the valued "acacia" flow.
Last but not least, Slovenian breeding program and its financial support are more than 30 years old and was implemented and financed in various forms. In current shape, we work in tandem with Slovenian Beekeepings's Association to implement modern genetic and genomic approaches.