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Our Family Tradition

Our Farm

When Canadians think of the prairies we often picture vast blue summer skies over a colorful patchwork of fields and pastures, and, of course, long, cold winters. This pristine environment with its extreme seasons is the home of Wendell Honey.

John Wendell purchased his first bee hives over eighty years ago. Since then Wendell Honey Farm has been producing premium Canadian white honey. Wendell Honey is still based on the original site near the village of MacNutt, Saskatchewan, but has grown to become a modern honey producer with over 4000 production hives.

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Tim and Isabel Wendell

Tim Wendell inspects a honeybee colony during pre-flow colony health checks

John and Alvera’s son, Tim left his teaching career in 1974 to take over Wendell Honey Farm. Tim’s life’s work and labor of love is all things bees and honey. On the Board of Directors for the Saskatchewan Beekeeper’s Association for 12 years, he also served as president for 8 years. Honey industry conferences around the globe have invited him to share his expertise through talks and presentations. Tim has participated in numerous international research studies, including projects lead by Tom Rinderer with US Department of Agriculture, Rob Currie with Manitoba Queen Breeders Association, Albert Robertson with the Saskatchewan Beekeepers Association and Leonard Foster with the University of British Columbia.

Daughter of renowned Manitoba horticulturalist Frank Leith Skinner, Isabel grew up on Skinner’s Nursery near the village of Dropmore, Manitoba. While Tim is busy in the bee yard or attending conferences, Isabel keeps the farm running. Despite managing everything from finance to logistics, employee affairs to taxes, certifications to sales and marketing for Wendell Honey and Wendell Estate, she still finds time to play with the grandchildren and tend to her substantial vegetable and flower gardens.

Isabel enjoys real, healthy food, gardening, and spending time outdoors

Next Generation

In recent years sons Nathan and Jeremy have returned from their careers abroad to rejoin the family farm, young families in tow.

Nathan divides his time between beekeeping and office management duties. Following in Tim’s footsteps, he currently serves as President of the Saskatchewan Beekeepers’ Development Commission (SBDC). Unsurprisingly, Nathan’s young sons Elijah and Henry already express a love of nature and a keen interest in bees. You’ll hear Nathan’s voice narrating many of our youtube channel videos. Nathan’s wife, Amy, is the star presenter of our recipe videos

Nathan and Jeremy Wendell

Jeremy spends a little too much of his time behind a desk in the office, but is always happy to get out help out with the farm work. He applies his medical and epidemiology background to researching the health benefits of honey. Jeremy’s wife, Carol Ye Min, a marketing professional originally from Wuhan, China is invaluable in collaborating with our China-side business partners. She leads our marketing efforts, Chinese and otherwise

Wendell Estate Honey

These talented people keep the office running

Real People - Jake Dingman

Carol Ye Min
Marketing Manager

Jake grew up right in MacNutt, SK. He first started working with Wendell Honey way back in 1994, while in high school and continued working summers while in university. His stubbornness got him through the first summer of long, sweaty hours of heavy labor and bee stings and he ended up falling in love with bee-keeping. Jake left his B.Sc degree at the University of Regina and went on to graduate from Fairview College in 1998 with a beekeeping technician certificate. In the years following, he bought some bee hives of his own to fill what little spare time he has in summer. Jake’s story on going from teenage summer employee to managing partner of the honey farm is here


Real People - Dan Margarit

Ashley Chamberlain
Office Manager

After gaining an engineering degree, Dan worked as a mechanical engineer in his native Romania. However true passion for decades has been bees and beekeeping. An expert beekeeper, Dan got into beekeeping young, buying his first hives at the age of 14. Dan has been with Wendell Honey since 2001. In 2005 Dan moved permanently to Canada with his wife and two sons and all have become Canadian citizens. Dan is currently a managing partner of Wendell Honey. Living in rural Saskatchewan, Dan honed his skills as a nature photographer – we use many of Dan’s photos on our marketing materials. You can hear Dan’s thoughts on bees beekeeping here

Real People - Cyrus Enns

Tiffany Shawcross
Administrator

Cyrus graduated high school in nearby Roblin, MB. He then went on to complete a Mechanical Engineering degree from the University of Manitoba and worked briefly as an engineer before escaping a career in the office by joining Wendell Honey in 2004. Fascinated by the science of bee-keeping, Cyrus supplemented his field experience by reading all the beekeeping journals he could get his hands on. Steeping himself in the study of bees, he bought some hives of his own to experiment on. A managing partner, Cyrus is our “Chief Efficiency Officer”. Meet Cyrus here.

The Wendell Honey Team

We are fortunate to be part of a diverse international team of experienced apiarists

Learn what the beekeepers do

Real People - Jake Dingman

Jake Dingman
Managing Partner

Jake grew up right in MacNutt, SK. He first started working with Wendell Honey way back in 1994, while in high school and continued working summers while in university. His stubbornness got him through the first summer of long, sweaty hours of heavy labor and bee stings and he ended up falling in love with bee-keeping. Jake left his B.Sc degree at the University of Regina and went on to graduate from Fairview College in 1998 with a beekeeping technician certificate. In the years following, he bought some bee hives of his own to fill what little spare time he has in summer. Jake’s story on going from teenage summer employee to managing partner of the honey farm is here


Real People - Dan Margarit

Dan Margarit
Managing Partner

After gaining an engineering degree, Dan worked as a mechanical engineer in his native Romania. However true passion for decades has been bees and beekeeping. An expert beekeeper, Dan got into beekeeping young, buying his first hives at the age of 14. Dan has been with Wendell Honey since 2001. In 2005 Dan moved permanently to Canada with his wife and two sons and all have become Canadian citizens. Dan is currently a managing partner of Wendell Honey. Living in rural Saskatchewan, Dan honed his skills as a nature photographer – we use many of Dan’s photos on our marketing materials. You can hear Dan’s thoughts on bees beekeeping here

Real People - Cyrus Enns

Cyrus EnnsManaging Partner

Cyrus graduated high school in nearby Roblin, MB. He then went on to complete a Mechanical Engineering degree from the University of Manitoba and worked briefly as an engineer before escaping a career in the office by joining Wendell Honey in 2004. Fascinated by the science of bee-keeping, Cyrus supplemented his field experience by reading all the beekeeping journals he could get his hands on. Steeping himself in the study of bees, he bought some hives of his own to experiment on. A managing partner, Cyrus is our “Chief Efficiency Officer”. Meet Cyrus here.

Real People - Shayne Wagner

Shayne Wagner

Shayne joined Wendell Honey in 1995, Shayne also graduated from Fairview College with a beekeeping technician certificate. Shayne shows his dedication to beekeeping by continuing to work with bees despite developing a serious bee-sting allergy. On the honey farm Shayne keeps things organized and mentors the new employees. Out in the bee yards Shane takes the time to explain things clearly and calmly in what is often a fast-moving, order-in-the-chaos, work environment. Shayne is also the front man of most of our beekeeping skills tutorials on the Wendell Estate youtube channel

Real People - Zulema Castillo

Zulema Castillo

Zulema is a veterinarian doctor from Veracruz, Mexico specializing in queen raising. She first came to Wendell Honey to gain experience at a Canadian commercial beekeeping operation’s queen raising program in 1998. These days Zulema has her own bee company that raises and sells queens and bees in Veracruz, Mexico. Despite running her own business, she makes time for summer visits to Canada to apply her expertise at Wendell Honey’s queen rearing program. Zulema is the queen of queen bees.

Real People - Eli Giola

Eli Giola

Eli Graduated with a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine from UNICEN in Buenos Aires, Argentina. After graduating she purchased her own hives and started beekeeping. She has since shifted her focus to raising queens, previously working in the United States, Italy, Alberta and Saskatchewan. Eli has been an integral member of Wendell Honey’s queen rearing program since 2014 and has recently obtained Canadian Permanent Residency status. Eli’s greatest passion is communing with nature and protecting the environment. Hear Eli’s story here.

Real People - Christopher Haws

Christopher Haws

Chris hails from Grimsby, Ontario. He graduated from Guelph University with a Agricultural Economics degree. In 2011 Chris answered a “help wanted” ad on the Canadian Honey Council website and has been at Wendell Honey ever since. As he lives in the log cabin on the farmyard, Chris is always on call. Chris helps out with spring check, canning our bulk honey and managing our inventory. He’s our year-round, round-the-clock, go-to guy when anything needs to be done at the farmyard

 

 
Real People - Edward Villanueva

Edward Villanueva

Edward learned beekeeping and queen rearing in the Philippines from his cousin. He came to Wendell Honey as a seasonal agricultural worker in 2009 and learned Canadian beekeeping practices. Eventually he gave up his job in the Philippines to move his family (his wife and 2 young sons) to Canada permanently. Edward’s main focuses are raising queens early in the season and then running a honey extraction line in the harvest season. Get Edward’s thoughts on beekeeping and life in Canada here.

Real People - Randy Carusen

Randy Carusen

Randy followed his cousin, Edward, into the life of Canadian beekeeping at Wendell Honey in 2009. Initially working as a seasonal worker, in 2015 he immigrated to Canada with his wife and 2 daughters. Randy overcame his fear of bee stings and has become a valuable member of the Wendell Honey team, focusing on queen rearing in the spring and early summer and then helping out with harvest later in summer. An incorrigible jokester, Randy’s a constant source of laughs in the bee yards. Meet Randy here.

Real People - Jose Juan Ruiz-Castillo

Jose Juan Ruiz-Castillo

Juan is former cattle rancher from Camoapa, Nicaruagua. He first came to work at Wendell Honey as a seasonal agricultural apiarist in 2008. Juan obtained his permanent residency through the Saskatchewan Immigration Nominee program in 2017 and moved to a farmyard just down the road from Wendell Honey Farm with his wife, Fatima and their two kids, Roberto and Amuari.

Real People - Ramon Lira Molina

Ramon Lira Molina

Ramon has been traveling from his home in Boaca, Nicaragua to MacNutt SK to work at Wendell Honey for the summer since 2008. He studied Agriculture and Pedagogy at the Enrique Jose Varona Politecnico in Camaguey, Cuba. He returned to Nicaragua after graduating to grow organic coffee on his own farm. Ramon served as the President of the Nicaraguan chapter of the Movimiento Agricultura Ecologica Latino Americano (MAELA), an international program to support the use of sustainable, non-chemical agricultural practices. He has been coming to Canada to help us during for the past 8 summers. The past 2 seasons his son, Eliezer, has come with him.

Real People - Brent Richard Ross

Brent Richard Ross

After graduating with B.Sc. degree from McMaster specializing in entomology, Brent realized the life of an academic was not for him. He now spends his summers in the bee yards. Despite (or perhaps because of?) being a vegan, Brent handles all of the heaviest physical work in the yards with ease. Brent is the talent behind our youtube channel videos and contributed most of the photos for this website. Watch Brent the take the selfie to a new level with his selfie video interview.

Real People - Sheri Ferguson

Sheri Ferguson

Sheri is another of local member of the team, living in the village of MacNutt. She started off working part-time in 2007 moved up to full time in 2012. Now she’s one of the senior supervisors in the honey house. Sheri has a wide range of responsibilities at Wendell Honey: she supervises extracting when we’re not bottling honey. When we do bottle honey, she supervises that. In the off season she also works shifts in the village store/post-office operated by Wendell Honey. She loves the physical work at the farm, but sometimes finds she needs to call on all of her patience when supervising.

Real People - Fitz Shaw

Fitz Shaw

With a beekeeper dad, Fitz grew up working with bees. He developed his career as a Government Bee Inspector in his native Jamaica. Fitz also has his own 200-plus colony honey farm in Jamaica, but has been leaving it in the care of his employees and coming up to Canada to work bees in the summer at Wendell Honey since 2016. In his own words, Fitz does “pretty much everything” at Wendell Honey. Watch Fitz give his take on beekeeping and life in Canada here.

Real People - Jorel Houle

Jorel Houle

Jorel Houle comes to Wendell Honey from the first nations community of Waywayseecappo. He moves fast and works hard, but no matter how hard he’s working, or what the conditions, Jorel’s always quick with a smile or a witty comment.