As the Beehive State, Utah has a historic connection with bees and honey. In the past few years, interest has also surged in beekeeping as a hobby. Perhaps it’s due to the tough economy and the natural foods movement, which have also spurred people to plant gardens, home-can and raise chickens. The U.S. Department of Agriculture estimates that there are between 139,000 and 212,000 beekeepers in the United States. Most are hobbyists with less than 25 hives.