1. Public and Product Liability Insurance

Your link to BBKA through Bucks BKA membership provides Public and Product Liability Insurance for all full members (Registered and Partner Members) of an affiliated local association.  It includes cover for officers of branches and associations undertaking activities in connection with their group.

A notice of cover is available for members attending farmers markets etc., where proof of cover is required.  It can be downloaded at scrolling down to “Insurance”.  A hard copy can be requested from BBKA HQ if the member does not have internet access.

Public Liability provides protection against claims and accusations made against members, by others, arising out of damage, bodily injury or disease in connection with beekeeping activities.  The limit of any one claim is £5,000,000, subject to £500 excess, except where the claim is for personal injury.  This insurance does not cover injury to any persons employed by the insured, nor to a member’s or association’s own property.

Products Liability provides protection against claims arising from the sale or supply of any honey or honey related products.  Claims are covered in any one year up to an aggregate of £5,000,000.

Any event likely to give rise to a claim under either of these heads should be notified to the Secretary of the BBKA.  Copies of your initial letter of notification must also be sent to the Secretary of the Bucks BKA.  Full details of the insurance cover and exclusions can be obtained from the BBKA, along with proof of membership and cover.

2. All Risks Insurance

BBKA has also arranged All Risks cover, which is available only to associations to cover loss or damage to their hives and beekeeping equipment, including trophies. It is not available at present to individual beekeepers.  Bees are also covered, but only for fire, lightning or theft.  Cover is throughout the U.K., and is subject to an excess of £50.  Events due to wear and tear are excluded.  The insured is expected to take all reasonable precautions for the safety and well-being of the property.  Cover is given by certificates based on the sums assured.  Full details and premiums are available from the BBKA’s HQ.

3.  Bee Diseases Insurance

This is a separate insurance run by ‘Bee Diseases Insurance Ltd’ designed to compensate insured beekeepers that lose stock due to a Notifiable Pest or Disease.  Payment is collected by your local association Treasurer.  BDI also provides financial support for research into bee diseases.   BDI is not necessarily “new for old.” Don’t see it as a cheap way of replacing your old combs.


All insurances assume that you have taken due care and when making claims you may need to give evidence of good practice.  To this end, it is recommended that all beekeepers seek to obtain the BBKA Basic Assessment.  See page Education

You usually purchase BDI cover at the start of the beekeeping year, give some thought to any expansion plans you have, such as splits or swarm collecting, as you must pay for the maximum number of hives you intend to keep.  If you have more hives than you paid for and you suffer a loss then standard insurance rules may apply, your loss may not be totally covered.


BDI was founded in 1937 with the object of providing compensation to people who had their bees destroyed by the Ministry because of foul brood and also to promote practical measures for the control of bee diseases.  In addition to compensating insured beekeepers for losses attributable to Notifiable Diseases, BDI promotes good health in the bee population by sponsoring beekeeper education through talks by highly qualified speakers at national events, and supporting research into bee diseases.

The Society is non-profit making and is incorporated under the Industrial and Provident Societies Acts.  All the work is done by volunteers, encouraged by a few small honoraria.  The Management Committee meets with the officers twice a year.

The members of BDI are the local Beekeepers Associations and there are now 176 members.  The individuals insured total 10,000.  Each Association pays to BDI enough to insure their individual members for two hives.  If beekeepers have more than two hives they are required to pay their local association Treasurer for the additional hives based on a sliding scale.  Associations remit all premiums to BDI.  All insured beekeepers are given a certificate of insurance that explains the terms and conditions of insurance, the rates of premiums and compensation payments to be made in the event of a claim.  Any non-beekeeping members of an Association may be excused from making premium payments.

Association members with up to 39 colonies are insured under Scheme A.  Those Association members with more than 39 hives and any beekeepers who are not members of an Association are insured under Scheme B.

The officers of the Society are appointed annually at the AGM.  Any claims against the insurance must be supported with a Ministry Certificate and your Certificate of Insurance.


Queries should in the first instance be directed to your local Association Treasurer.