“Daddies make sugar” in a beehive in southern Ostrobothnia, where there’s always a small-scale creative chaos. Mishaps have not been avoided although this group of three fathers operating in Isokyrö take their business – along with playfulness – in the right kind of seriousness, while transparency, naturalness and authenticity are the key.
Ville Rinta and Juho Wiberg met for the first time around 2012 at a club called Cuba, which was described as “the best in Helsinki”. In addition to jokes, a lot of creative ideas flew on the dance floor, which later materialized when Juho visited Ville’s hometown of Isokyrö. When the surfer-minded friends who had been enjoying themselves on the west coast for a long time moved from the cityscape to the beautiful flower meadows of Kyrönmaa, the idea of the best wax material for the surfboard, beeswax, was born.
“I visited Isokyrö in the summer and the local corners and people became familiar within a few years. Along every time was the always twinkling Ville and another even wilder business ideas. Some were more feasible than others, ” says Juho.
The moment that was significant for the story of Sugar Daddies was when Eero Lähdesmäki and Jussi Peltoniemi, who cultivated the land in Ville’s nearby fields in 2017, took part in the ideation process. The professional degree of Eero, a former beekeeper who worked for the company, was guaranteed to have something to do with the outcome, as most of the know-how came through him. The rest of the practical things were learned together – and most often through trial and error. From the beginning, Sugar Daddies’ carrying force has been the unbeatable group dynamic, with each person having their own important role to play.
“Ville has as much energy as a small village, and this gentleman doesn’t lack the storytelling skills. Jussi, on the other hand, is our cool and calm number man, who makes sure that the business is taken care of. I, on the other hand, have acted as the occasional handbrake of the gang and the sound of reason as the sparks of passion flare up. I have also looked after the company’s brand development. And then there would be Eero, we miss Eero! He got enough of the injections and nowadays focuses on other challenges, ” says Juho.
Photos: Ville-Veikko Väisänen
Organic honey with love
Sugar Daddies house bees in their own hand-assembled beehives, from which porpoises can fly freely towards Isonkyrö’s abundant flower supply. Once nature has done its job and the bees have collected their nectar, Sugar Daddies ’guys can gently harvest the cells, brushing the honey to recover, after which the honey is centrifuged and canned without sieving. Honey is not mixed or heated and small coincidences are involved.
In addition to achieving the perfect taste experience, Sugar Daddies has invested in visuals. Juho, who works in marketing and design, knows that if the contents of the jar are excellent in terms of taste, composition and color, the packaging should also go hand in hand with the product itself.
The efforts can be seen on the @sugardaddieshoneycompany Instagram account, the feed of which contains stunning images with a relaxed atmosphere. Juho says Sugar Daddies has lured in with a little help from a circle of friends a talented photographer who is behind most of the output. Related parties, of course, participate in the pure joy of helping, but ”honey pay” and Sugar Daddies merch products also serve as a hard currency.”
The work of beekeepers – balancing horror and promoting biodiversity
The work of a beekeeper produces constant surprises for its makers and although the road to expertise has been a long one, it has felt all the more rewarding. Juho mentions that there is a constant balance of horror when dealing with beehives: “Is the process going as planned, this time saving from the bigger palms or reaching out with less evil, ie single injections?”. However, professional skills have accumulated profusely over the years, and the certainty created by experience is already visible in everyday work.
“Working with bees is an engaging and focused activity. It’s also about seasonal emphasis, which poses its own challenges. Once the community has overwintered and the spring winds are starting to blow, the boys need to get the fields to soldier on long days. We then set out to create conditions for the bees to survive, reproduce and eventually produce honey. ”
Promoting biodiversity is constantly involved in the idea. However, it is good for the beekeeper to remember that insects carry out their own business independently of humans. The communities flock voluntarily and operate under their queen – and by no means the orchard. Even the most experienced beekeeper is not able to anticipate everything, because the surrounding interaction between nature and bees is something that man, despite his strong efforts, cannot influence too much.
Insects that pollinate plants on the lands of Isokyrö are invaluable both to the economic production of local farmers and to the activities of all mankind. The burden on worried friends is slightly eased when it is possible for them to prevent the impoverishment of biodiversity and at the same time offer people taste pleasures – Sugar Daddies Co’s organically produced organic honey can be found on store shelves all over Finland.
The latest product from the nesting tower in Isokyrö has been assigned to Hotel Mestari. From there the entire season’s harvest will be harvested in a honey jar designed for Mestari.