Expert says bee farming can boost Nigeria’s GDP by 18%
The National Association of Women in Bee-keeping, says bee farming has the capacity to increase the country’s Gross Domestic Product by 18 per cent, if adequately tapped.
The National Chairman of the association, Obianuju Okpo, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on Wednesday that the world value for bee products was worth 250 billion dollars.
Okpo expressed concern over the neglect of bee farming in the country, saying it could generate employment and improve yields of other agricultural produce.
She said that Nigeria could earn foreign exchange from the sale of honey at the international markets.
According to her, if bees go extinct, the world will collapse in four years, so what most countries do is to encourage the farmers to increase the bee population.
“Africa is still so untapped in bee farming and in Nigeria; we have not even harnessed up to one per cent of the advantages in bees.
“If fully developed and people come into the business, bee farming will add a lot of income to the economy.
“Bee farming is a type of farming that when you invest, you get about 25 per cent extra to your investment and you do not work for it.
“You do not need to put anything apart from your hives to the farm, you do not need to go back to weed or add fertiliser; the bee does the work.
“If fully nurtured and tapped, honey business will improve the GDP of the country by 18 per cent.’’
Okpo said that the USAID, in collaboration with a company in Nigeria, had in the last two months, trained 500 women in the farming.
He said that the beneficiaries of the training were selected from different states across the country.
“USAID organised capacity building on household and field training for women on bee farming.
It also provide hives to them at subsidised cost to enable them establish their honey business,’’ Okpo said.
The chairman disclosed that Nigeria would host the first apiculture (bee keeping) expo in 2018.
She urged bee farmers across the country to rise up to the responsibility in order to show case their achievements.
Okpo, who is also the Secretary of the apiculture expo in the country, appealed to state governments to assist in building capacities of bee farmers to develop and encourage the trade.
Most of the vegetables we eat are pollinated by honeybees.
Even plants that are capable of self-pollination tend to produce in greater quantities when pollinated by the honeybee.
Of course, there are other pollinators such as the carpenter bees and other insects, but they aren’t always as efficient as honeybees and they can often become more of a nuisance than a help.
There are at least 10 crops that would disappear without the honeybee. This includes apples, almonds, blueberries, cherries, avocados, cucumbers, onions, grapefruit, oranges, and pumpkins.
There are so many awesome uses for beeswax. It’s perfect for making beautiful candles, lip balms, hair care products, soaps, and wood polishes, just to name a few.
Big Read |