Nick French is a U.S. Marine Corps veteran who, after working in the finance and real estate industries for 20 years, desired to make more of a difference in the world. In 2008, he started Frangiosa Farms with his wife Ali. He began beekeeping in his backyard to save the bees and provide honey as a pure and natural product for consumers. Nick and Ali discovered that they could infuse the pure and raw honey with full spectrum hemp extract for a unique infused honey product. Ali, who has years of experience as an aromatherapist, added organic essential oils to this combination for flavor and additional benefits. As a result, Colorado Hemp Honey was created in 2015 and they began to bottle right in the basement of their home. Since that time, Nick and Ali moved their operations to their local farm in Parker, CO where they produce Colorado Hemp Honey. This week, we got to virtually chat with Nick about his journey!
Tell us a little bit about your background!
I am a U.S. Marine Corps veteran and gained knowledge through my time and travels in the U.S. Marine Corps and through traditional education. I studied biology, tropical marine biology in Australia, microbiology, and finance. I am also passionate about urban farming and bee-keeping. I have been keeping bees since 2008 in urban farms, on rooftops, and in backyards. Currently, the farm that started it all – Frangiosa Farms – has over 75 hives in 6 apiaries in and around Parker, Colorado.
I created the Adopt a Honeybee program, which is a donations-based program that helps safely shepherd bees and establish new bee colonies. Donations also go towards education for new beekeepers. I focus on natural and sustainable beekeeping practices that consider the long-term effects of maintaining healthy bee colonies without the use of chemicals to treat the hives. We only use essential oils and organic practices to treat the farms’ hives. As a Marine Corps veteran, I was inspired by a mission to create a way for those struggling with anxiety and PTSD to have a safer, natural alternative and compliment to traditional medical treatments.
How did you come to create Colorado Hemp Honey?
As a beekeeper already, I knew there were excellent benefits for people in raw honey alone. I went on to learn the value of cannabinoids and the hemp plant and figured out how to combine that with the raw honey from his beehives. My wife Ali, who is an aromatherapist, helped develop a method to infuse the additional benefits of organic essential oils into the honey and as result, Colorado Hemp Honey was born in 2015.
How do you source your materials? What is the mission behind Frangiosa Farm?
We source a lot of the materials we use right here on our farm in Parker, Colorado. Raw honey from the hives and full-spectrum Hemp extract from the plants in the field. We also use the Bee Propolis from the hives to make our new Hemp Bee Propolis tinctures! Our mission is straight-forward: To create and share the most innovative natural products that support the health and wellness of individuals, communities and the eco-systems that help create them
Honey is a fantastic super-food all on its own with several beneficial properties that have been used for thousands of years to promote wellness. Most crucially, raw honey also acts as a unique delivery system for the cannabinoids and terpenes in the full-spectrum Hemp extract and essential oils to ensure a quicker and more complete absorption in the body than standard tinctures or pills. Plus, the stuff is delicious!
What do you hope customers experience or learn when using Colorado Hemp Honey?
I believe that our honey is best enjoyed as part of a ritual. Many people enjoy it in their morning or evening tea, in a smoothie, on toast or as part of an otherwise enjoyable experience. It is sweet and earthy and a great way to help yourself “Bee Calm Bee Rested and Bee Happy.”
Do you have any favorite resources for studying beekeeping?
I have two favorites. One is my 1966 copy of ABD and XYZ of Bee Culture by A.I. Root. This is a classic study of all things beekeeping and more. It is a great history lesson in beekeeping with many practical techniques that are still applicable today. Second is Natural Beekeeping by Ross Conrad. When I read this book I thought, wow this is how I see myself keeping bees.
If you could have tea with any person living or dead, who and what kind of tea would you serve them?
Strange as this may sound, I would like to have tea with the younger version of myself, so I could share all of the things I have learned in my life through trial and error, and I have made a few of those. We would drink Lapsang Souchong (smokey tea) because we both like it! 😉
Thank you, Nick. Try Colorado Hemp Honey for yourself here!