Slovenski med – written in black on the lids. These words announce that the slim jars are filled with original, golden brown honey from Slovenia. The alpine republic is not only famous for its mountains, lakes and ski resorts. It can also boast a proud tradition of apiculture. Per capita, no other nation is home to more beekeepers. The Slovenian painter and zoologist Anton Janša is considered a pioneer of apicultural science. In the eighteenth century he was the master beekeeper at Empress Maria Theresa’s court and a teacher at the Theresian School of Beekeeping in Vienna. The UN General Assembly designated Janša’s birthday on May 20 as World Bee Day, and has been commemorating the importance of bees for the Earth’s ecosystems since 2018. Slovenian beekeepers teach kindergarten and schoolchildren about the pollinators, and also host a “Traditional Slovenian Breakfast” every third Friday in November. In addition to local butter, apples, brown bread and milk, the meal also features honey. The event is now being adopted as the “European Honey Breakfast” in neighboring countries, where it is enjoying growing popularity.

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