Bee industry representatives have voted overwhelmingly to move ahead with plans to unite the sector under a single organisation.
Discussions at the apiculture conference this week have ended with the two beekeeper bodies, and honey packers and exporters agreeing to take the next step down the path to unification.
National Beekeepers Association chief executive Daniel Paul said they would set up an interim governance board now to carry on with the planning for a new industry organisation.
"Working through more of the detail about how this new entity might look and how it might be funded and what it might do and that information is going to come back to industry to be reviewed down the track.
"So we're at stage one, but it's positive and we're now going through the more detailed business case if you like."
The aim is to have a final unification proposal for the bee industry to vote on next year.