Megan Ryan

Fortitude Founder

Allen County
Founder Profile




Southwest Honey Co.



Grant Date

March 2019


Helping students become engaged in the world of honey bees.

Education is the key to changing minds and changing habits.

This is what Megan Ryan and her partner, Alex Cornwell, discovered while beekeeping for two years. Although their journey began as a desire to raise bees and harvest their honey, Megan and Alex grew their company into so much more.

Southwest Honey Co. is determined to educate the Fort Wayne community on pollinators and their importance in our ecosystem – and our grocery stores. Their unique educational curriculum helps students of all ages connect the purpose of pollination to their favorite fruits and vegetables. Without honey bees, we wouldn’t be able to eat (or even have easy access to) blueberries and other sweet, healthy treats.

Southwest Honey Co.

The curriculum was created by Megan, an educator herself, to educate students on what pollinators do and why they are important. But the curriculum also includes how their endangerment will affect our lives just 20 years into the future and how they can take easy steps to protect pollinators and reverse these changes.

The “Explore The Honey Bee” curriculum is nationally recognized for its ability to reconnect consumers with where their favorite foods come from and for using this idea to advocate for honey bee protection.

The programs are being offered as summer programs in local libraries, for girl scout troops, at YMCAs, and more. With a micro-grant from Fortitude Fund, Megan will be able to begin expanding her reach to low-budget or no-budget classrooms, bringing this important lesson on pollinators to more K-12 students.

In the long term, Megan hopes that the “Explore The Honey Bee” curriculum can become a national educational resource used by teachers, homeschool parents, Girl Scout troop leaders, and more to educate students on the importance of protecting honey bees.

Whatever the future holds for Southwest Honey Co., Megan and Alex hope they can continue their efforts to save the bees right here in Fort Wayne.

Connect with Southwest Honey Co. on social media

Business Updates

Southwest Honey explains bee swarms

Honey bee “Swarm Season” is in full effect, but don’t worry. Southwest Honey Company has advice to mitigate swarms and help the bee population.

If you spot a large clump of honey bees on a branch, in a tree, or other covered area, you have found a swarm. Honey bees swarm naturally when the conditions are right for them to split their colony. This is how they keep their species populated.

A Toast To National Pollinator Week

National Pollinator Week begins this Monday, and here in Fort Wayne, Southwest Honey Co. is abuzz with plans for a honey of a celebration called “Bees & Brew.”

This year’s affair will be hosted at the Foellinger-Freimann Botanical Conservatory, and will include the debut of a special honey beer, as well as honey-based hors d’oeuvres and activities.

Southwest Honey Company talks about what to do if you see a bee swarm

They’re a vital part of our ecosystem, but to some people bees are a nuisance. After a short spring, it’s swarm season, and if you see a swarm, you should know what to do to protect yourself and the bees.

“We were living in southwest Allen County and I was mowing and noticed the bees in the trees, and it was a large swarm of honey bees, so I called the Department of Natural Resources,” said Scott Sims.

My Hometown: Southwest Honey Co.

A lot of our food consumption starts from pollination from honey bees. Experts predict if their decline continues at the rate it’s going now, honey bees could be extinct by 2035. This is a global trend. The people at Southwest Honey Co. are determined to do something now before it’s too late.

Southwest Honey Co.: In The News

Keep up with Southwest Honey Co. on their In The News page!

Contact Megan Ryan