In 2011, John Wright had a lightbulb moment. What if he could raise awareness about the health benefits of honey, share its various culinary uses, and make a living all in one? With that, his company Bee Wild was born.
The company, located right outside of the Atlanta area, has only one employee: John. However, John’s honey supplier is his father. Since the age of 10, John’s father has been a beekeeper, which he learned to love from John’s great-grandfather.
When his grandfather passed away in 1977, John’s dad inherited all the beekeeping equipment and decided to build a small “honey house” behind the home John grew up in on Lake Lanier—located in Gainesville, Georgia. A few years later, John’s dad decided to go into the honey business full-time, quadrupling the size of the honey house and family business. John then took the opportunity to package, brand, and sell their family honey to turn their love into a lifestyle.
Covid-19 destroyed Bee Wild’s normal venues: farmer’s markets, gift shows, and community festivals. While Bee Wild luckily had their website set up for eCommerce prior to the pandemic, they faced a 70% revenue cut and a severe overstock of their honey products. John was forced to shift all sales online through Amazon and Bee Wild’s website under nationwide lockdowns. He recently received a grant from the NGLCC and UPS that will allow him to pay his independent contractors through the end of the year. “Business is picking up now that it’s summer and restrictions are lifted, but this grant saved us.”
John is passionate about education around honey and its variations. “It’s like selling a fine wine, but you’re putting it in a bottle that markets it like a condiment.” John’s background in nutrition, spas, and wellness has enabled Bee Wild to sell honey-based skincare products with many benefits, too.