AUSTIN (KXAN) — The Sustainable Food Center showcased its new teaching apiary Tuesday with a ceremony introducing the queen bee to its colony.

The event took place in SFC’s Teaching Garden and included a live beekeeper demonstration, apiary overview, tours of the garden and BeeSweet Lemonade.

SFC’s Ronda Rutledge said the unveiling of the apiary was a chance to bring together the community members and donors that made it possible.

New bee apiary at the Sustainable Food Center. (KXAN Photo)

“Now, we’ll be able to also partner with folks like Tara Chapman and Two Hives Honey, as well as Austin Bees, to do classes around beekeeping,” Rutledge said. “We’re really excited to be able to add that to the compliment of other basic-organic-gardening classes that we teach here at SFC.”

The new apiary will offer gardening classes, field trips and tours. The SFC expects this will bring pollinator awareness to the community, adding that some classes will teach how to care for bees and not be afraid of them.

“The main reason that we wanted to get an apiary and some bees is because we wanted to highlight how important sustainable agriculture methods are to preserving pollinators, which are essential to our food production,” Sari Albornoz, Grow Local Program Coordinators said.

The inauguration is part of SFC’s Bee Week lasting until April 23. Other events include bee and honey activities, beekeeping classes, and an open garden event. A full list of events can be found here.