"And your Lord taught the honey bee ...."
"And your Lord taught the honey bee to build its cells in hills, on trees, and in (men's) habitations; Then to eat of all the produce (of the earth), and find with skill the spacious paths of its Lord: there issues from within their bodies a drink of varying colours, wherein is healing for men: verily in this is a Sign for those who give thought. (Surat an-Nahl (The Bee), 68-69)
It is generally known that honey is a fundamental food source for the human body, whereas only a few people are aware of the extraordinary features of its producer, the honeybee.
As known, food source of bees is nectar, which is not possible to be found during winter. For this reason, they combine the nectar collected in summer time with special secretions of their body, produce a new food substance, which is honey, and store it for the coming winter months.
It is noteworthy that the amount of honey stored by the bees is much more than their actual need. The question which comes to the mind is why this "excessive production", which seems to be a waste of time and energy is not stopped? The answer to this question is hidden in the verse which states that the bee is "taught" so by the Lord.
Bees innately produce honey not only for themselves but also for the human beings. As a matter of fact, bees, like many other beings in nature, are offered to the service of man. Just like the chicken laying at least one egg a day although it does not need it, or the cow producing much more milk than its offspring needs.