Zach & Zoë Sweet Bee Farm: Here's What Happened After Shark Tank

When Kam and Summer Johnson's youngest son, Zachary, struggled with seasonal allergies and asthma after moving to rural Hunterdon County, New Jersey, Summer researched homeopathic remedies and found promising results using raw honey immunotherapy. Similar to allergy shots but sweeter, raw honey is believed to build the body's immune system to local allergens homeopathically (via Healthline).

In 2015 after Zach showed a positive response to the therapy and the family realized they were spending their free time learning about beekeeping from local experts, the Johnsons decided to take the leap and begin a family business. Named after their two children (who have since grown to three), Zach & Zoë Sweet Bee Farm started selling its organic raw honey at the Stockton Market in Hunterdon County, New Jersey, in 2016. 

By 2018, the family added two more retail locations at the Ferry Market in New Hope, Pennsylvania, and Chelsea Market in New York City. Sales went national when its products were chosen for Oprah's Favorite Things in 2020, followed by becoming Chase Bank's brand ambassador in 2021. 

As an established brand, Zach & Zoë Sweet Bee Farm had some momentum heading into the "Shark Tank" in 2021, where the family pitched to Sharks: Barbara Corcoran, Kevin O'Leary, Mark Cuban, Lori Greiner, and guest Shark Daniel Lubetzky.

What happened to Zach & Zoë Sweet Bee Farm on Shark Tank?

Zach & Zoë Sweet Bee Farm appeared on Season 13, Episode 7 of "Shark Tank" on Nov 19, 2021. In addition to selling directly to consumers at three farmers market locations, the honey already retailed at Macy's and Bloomingdale's. It had recently been accepted into Target's Accelerator Program, which helps established companies scale up production to meet the demands of mass retail.

The entire family appeared on set, dressed in coordinating yellow outfits, looking for an initial investment of $150,000 for 10% equity in their company. Cuban, Lubetzky, and Greiner passed on the deal for several reasons, including the Target program, that it was a family business, and because Greiner doesn't like honey, a similar reason she passed on investing in Lord Nut Levington in 2011. 

O'Leary was the first to show interest in the company and offered his typical deal. He countered with a $150,000 investment for a $1 royalty on every jar sold until the investment was paid off, then $0.25 per jar in perpetuity.

Corcoran saw the business as a budding "empire" and the Johnsons as a reflection herself, so she offered $200,000 for a 20% equity, "juicier" than the Johnsons were initially looking for. After some negotiating, the parties agreed on an initial investment of $200,000 for a 15% share of the company for Corcoran.

Zach & Zoë Sweet Bee Farm after Shark Tank

Although fans watched the parties shake hands, it appears the deal fell through after the show aired. Neither Zach & Zoë Sweet Bee Farm nor Barbara Corcoran's website mentions the partnership or confirms the agreement was finalized. Of the 80 investments Corcoran has made with "Shark Tank" entrepreneurs, Be Free Honee is the only honey company listed. 

However, that hasn't slowed down the company's progress. Following its "Shark Tank" premiere, Zach & Zoë Sweet Bee Farm continues to thrive, adding new products and retail opportunities. 

By 2022, the company was selling its organic, raw honey in different flavors, bee pollen, honeycomb, and tote bags in over 100 stores nationwide and online. Zach & Zoë Sweet Bee Farm can also be found internationally at Godshot Studio in Glasgow, United Kingdom. 

The brand has been featured in publications like BuzzFeed, Black Enterprise, and Magnolia, focused on black-owned businesses, particularly during the pandemic when they were disproportionally hit. The company's honey continues to be included in Christmas and Valentine's Day gift lists, including Chelsea Market's on Food Network. 

Zach & Zoë Sweet Bee Farm can also be seen in a hilarious "The Daily Show" segment where Dulcé Sloan explores why there's little diversity in the beekeeping business (hint: the unflattering outfit, which was compared to a laundry hamper, is only the beginning). 

Is Zach & Zoë Sweet Bee Farm still in business?

Zach & Zoë Sweet Bee Farm is still in business and seems to be thriving. The Farm sits on five-and-a-half acres, housing three million bees in deep boxes, each containing as many as 200,000 bees (via YouTube). A hive can hold 50 pounds of honey capped by beeswax, but to keep up with demand, Zach & Zoë Bee Farm rely on local beekeepers to supplement the honey. 

Twenty flavors of its unfiltered, raw honey retail on the company's website, where consumers can learn more about its medicinal properties. Best sellers include creamed wildflower, wildflower with lavender, wildflower with lemon, and creamed pumpkin spice. The company offers limited edition seasonal raw honey in flavors like cranberry for the fall. The brand can also be found online at Amazon, which occasionally sells special gift boxes. 

One-pound jars of honey retail between $20 and $24 with immunity booster varieties like matcha and gingerroot and fruit additions like blueberry and raspberry. The company also packages honeycomb for $22 and bee pollen for $25. A three-pack gift box featuring two-ounce sample jars of raw honey (in your choice of flavors) can be purchased for $28. 

What's next for Zach & Zoë Sweet Bee Farm?

The company continues to expand its wholesale business. Wholesalers can purchase the honey with a $100 minimum, free returns, and free shipping for one year. Products ship from Lebanon, New Jersey with a four to six-day lead time. Retail locations, including Anthropologie, which stocks its raw honeycomb, can be found using your zip code on its website.

In May 2023, it collaborated with Kith Treats on two ice cream flavors available for a limited time in all U.S. Kith Treat locations. A matcha-infused vanilla ice cream called The Marigold is drizzled with Zach & Zoë's matcha raw honey, and The Teddy combines vanilla ice cream, sliced strawberries, Honey Bunches of Oats cereal, and Teddy Grahams with Zach & Zoë's lemon raw honey.

Zach & Zoë Sweet Bee Farm sells its honey wholesale to restaurants in New York City — like Fairfax, where the chef incorporates it into recipes. The company has also partnered with the local Jewish community to support black-owned businesses and supply them with honey for the high holidays (per YouTube).

Honey, unlike other foods, can be stored indefinitely since it doesn't go bad unless contaminated. It may crystalize and harden, but gently heating it will make it pourable again. Honey with signs of mold or foul odor should be discarded, particularly if it's raw.