CATCH THE BUZZ – Canadian Company Places Hives in Backyards, Balconies or Roofs for Homeowners



By Alan Harman

Montreal-based start-up company Alveole ( is cashing in on the growing popularity of urban beekeeping by renting out hives to people interested in producing their own honey.

The CTV television network reports Alveole says the number of hives being rented out this coming season isn’t final yet, since many people start don’t start the process until later in the spring.

Once rented, the company places hives in either a backyard, a balcony or a flat roof. The renting period lasts one year, and costs C$65 (US$51) a month. Alveole staff does all the beehive maintenance.

A single installed Alveole hive can produce 22 to 33 lbs. of honey for the homeowners.

The hives, usually made of pine, have 10 frames in them, initially accommodating 10,000 bees.

Alveole has beehives in Toronto, Quebec City and at more than 250 locations in Montreal, where the company started in 2012. Alveole says its hands are full with their existing locations, so there are no plans for the moment to expanding to other cities,

“We also have been experimenting since 2013 with prototype hives and other technologies related to food production and urban roofs,” the company says.

Declan Rankin Jardin, one of the three founders of Alveole, says the company is opening new honey houses in Toronto and Quebec City in June, where it will educate people on bees and guide them through the bee-keeping process.

Alvéole was launched in 2012 by three friends Rankin Jardin, Alexandre McLean and Étienne Lapierre after spending years as beekeepers in Manitoba.