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Beekeeping business

Dark side of beekeeping in India

"In Gujarat, people are taking more interest in the business of the honeybee than the business of honey."

We are working in the field of beekeeping from 2012. We have seen a lot of up-down in these years. For every new person who willing to start beekeeping, this article became useful for them.

At present, millions of enthusiastic youths and farmers in our country are looking forward to the business of beekeeping. In which our honorable Prime Minister Modi's "Sweet Revolution" is a major contributor. Beekeeping is the need of the present time. It has hidden solution of many problems related to health, unemployment and pollination problem of the agricultural farm.

But like every coin gets two-sides, the same downside is also developing.

"In Gujarat, people are taking more interest in the business of the honeybee than the business of honey." Due to this kind of activity, many enthusiastic youngsters and innocent farmers are being victimized. Some people are selling honeybee by speaking seductive and fiction talks, who have never even produced honey in a commercial way. Or just they are the broker of honey bees.

There is a belief in people's mind that beekeeping is the same as animal husbandry but the reality is very different. By keeping apiary or bee colonies/boxes at one place, it is not possible to produce honey in a commercial way. Because it is almost nonsensical that you would able to provide huge amounts of flower in one place for 365 days.

Suppose we have 100 bee colonies or bee boxes, then we should have 100 acres of land which is full of flowers. If this is possible then we will get profitable income from beehives. That is why a beekeeper migrates their beehives according to the season.

Crop such as mustard (lai), thyme (ajwain), fennel (soph), coriander(dhania), pigeon pea (tuver), sesame, alfalfa, babul, and coconut are useful for production of honey in Gujarat.

A beginner should note that crop such as wheat, cotton, peanut, jowar, paddy, etc., are not useful for honey production.

The geographical condition of Gujarat and North India is very different. In Gujarat, production of honey is very low, some reasons are high temperature and humidity, more amount of green bee-eater(a green colored bird which is able to catch honeybee from the air) and more use pesticides in the farm.

There are many confusions in the people's minds about the economic value of honey. If a person sells his own honey by himself, then he will be able to earn sufficient amount of money according to quality of honey and marketing. But if he sells his honey to a wholesaler or company, then he will get a negligible amount of money.

That is why I recommend that any person who is willing to start beekeeping, please inspect/ survey the market first.

Mostly a person who only trades honeybees has exaggeration stories. So before making any project report and taking lawn one should need to know this business correctly. So it is better to start with a small step, then go ahead with more experience and investment.

Be sure about the insecticide used in the farm area before placing honeybee boxes for pollination in the farm of pomegranate, mango, etc. Although the honeybee is a very gentle insect (despite having a sting ... !!), it does not stand in front of the pesticide. The list of horticulture farmers who have failed in beekeeping is very big.

My personal opinion is that those who have a sensible attachment to the honeybee then go ahead in this field. Honeybee would sting quickly those who consider only economic aspect.