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Women In CT Changing Food Culture

Updated: Mar 23

Women's History Month

Carla Marina Marchese of Red Bee Apiary Creates Rare and Specialty Honey

Italian Honey Bee: En Wikipedia

Creative Commons-Bilder Foto Wuestenigel

Carla Marina Marchese owns Red Bee Honey Apiary in Weston CT. She began her career in international design and became interested in beekeeping by accident when she visited Montalcino Italy. She enrolled in their courses in beekeeping and learned how to raise Italian bees and produce honey. She became the first Italian beekeeper in the United States. Carla Marina started Red Bee Apiary in 2000 and Red Bee Honey became the company's brand.

She went back to Italy three time to complete her training as a beekeeper. Her book Honeybee Lessons From An Accidental Beekeeper describes her journey in becoming a beekeeper. Marina organized the Honey Tasting Society in the US an organization that bring educational courses and seminars about beekeeping to the public.

Italian Honey Bee Colony With Queen: Photo Source US Department of Agriculture/Flicker

For several years she sold the honey her company produced to local farmer's markets and retail stores in Connecticut. She says that some people did not believe a woman could succeed in this business but she did. Now she advises women to believe in themselves, find their voice, and be fearless when starting a business. .Trust your instincts she says.

She developed single origin honey made from one type of flower that gives the product a unique taste. Single origin honey will taste like the flower or fruit the bee gathers the nectar from. For example, if honeybee gathers nectar from blueberry flowers it will taste like blueberries or rosemary flowers the honey will taste like rosemary.

Bee Pollinating Lavendar: Photo Source Dave Nakayama/Flicker

Carla Marina learned about honey plants, the time of year the plants bloomed, and found qualified beekeepers to raise the plants and bees. The company produces specialty honey. Red Bee is a small apiary that raises bees, chickens and has a vegetable and herb garden. They host educational events, teach beekeeping, and make and produce their own brand.

Red Bee honey is sold in a variety of flavors blueberry, clover, lavender, lime, orange, and raspberry. The sell single origin containers of honey and gift packs. During her studies, Carla Marina learned that the type of soil you grow honey plants in will change the taste and flavor of the honey. She became an expert over the years in specialty honey and made a positive mark on food culture.

Visit the Red Bee Apiary website to learn more about Red Bee Honey and Carla Marina Marchese. You will find photos there and can order online single jars of honey or gift packs from their website. They specialize in rare and specialty honey from around the world.

Honey in Jars: Photo Source: Pexels


It's A Woman's World Red Bee Honey Carla Marina Marchese, by Jeanne Muchnick, March 14, 2018, CT Bites

Carla Marina Marchese, Honey Connoisseur, by Kim Flottum, Bee Culture, December 2018

Meet the Maker: Marina Marchese of Red Bee Honey, William Somona Taste 2019

Red Bee Honey Website

Photo Source: Wix Media

Abby Helman Kelly Owner of Wicked Gluten Free New England

Abby Helman Kelly discovered she suffered from allergies to gluten in 2012 from a blood test. She had a degree in counseling and saw an opportunity to help others that suffered from celiac and gluten allergies. She started with a website the provided online resources in CT and in 2016 expanded to Gluten Free New England due to the demand for her services.

Many men, women and children today suffer from celiac disease and allergies to gluten. Gluten is found in wheat, barley, rye and other grains. It causes digestive problems, rashes, low energy, loss of appetite, pain, fever, and other symptoms. Gluten damages the small intestine and causes pain and makes daily tasks a struggle those that suffer from the illness.

Abby Kelly's organization helps consumers find gluten free resources to buy food, restaurants that serve gluten free entrees, and provides support through online groups and organizations. She has planned expos, helped with online support groups, and arranged farm to table dinners.

Vegetables: Commons Wikipedia

She arranged an expo in the Danbury Sports Dome in 2023 on Gluten Free Living. The expo had gluten free vendors and a lecture by Dr. Anthony Porto the Medical Director of Yale New Haven Pediatric Celiac Program.

Many people suffer from mild to severe symptoms from wheat and the numbers continue to grow. Abby's husband a local businessman helped her set up the organization as an LLC company, develop the website, and learn how to operate it. She learned how to use social media and the first expo had 1,000 attendees. She used Facebook only to promote it.

Gluten Free Onion Rings Photo Source Foodista

Today she promotes the business using Instagram, Facebook and Patch. She plans on expanding the organization now called Wicked Gluten Free New England because the number of consumers that suffer from gluten intolerance continues to increase.

Gluten Free Churros: Photo Source: Sin Gluten Maria Blog

Abby Kelly is married and has four children. She is owner of Wicked Gluten Free New England. She has a BS in Communications from Boston University and an MS in Counseling from Loyola University. She is a leader in gluten free living.

Visit her website Wicked Gluten Free New England to learn more about her gluten free resources that include recipes, dining guides, organizations, and expos held throughout New England.


A Simsbury mom's gluten sensitivity inspired her to help thousands through Gluten Free New England by Pamelaa McLoughlin, Hartford Courant 2023, Yahoo

My Big Idea by Sophie Yarin, Boston University Alumni Magazine, April 2023 Profile of Abbey Kelly at Wicked Gluten Free New England

Wicked Gluten Free Website 2024

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