Harvesting Barbadian wild honey is becoming a downer as the sweet-tooth hunters report increasing danger from marijuana growers,’
The Barbados Today online newspaper reports bee farmers coming across ganja plots report they get threats to their lives.
One farmer told the news outlet that he was chased by a group of men after happening upon a marijuana patch while looking for the honey in a forested area.
Barbados Bee Keeping Association president David Small advised against searching for wild honey saying those that do should become beekeepers instead.
“If you hear of something that is going on, why would you put yourself in a position of compromise?” he asks.
“We understand that people in Barbados want to make an honest living, but that is why I would encourage anybody to keep bees rather than going in areas that you don’t know about. The only way I would do it now is if the hive is right by the side of the road.
Small says while he has never come across marijuana plantations, he was once sternly warned against entering a forested area by a group of men who were apparently guarding their illegal crop.
Small says as there is no fundamental difference in taste between honey produced by bees in the wild and that produced by bees raised on a farm, there is no reason for honey lovers to take undue risks.
“There is no difference at all because in Barbados we do not feed our bees,” he says. “I do not feed my bees, I let them act as if they are in the wild; I just provide a safer environment for them. The same things they eat in the wild is the same things they eat on the farms, so there is no big difference in the taste of the honey, so there is no need to go risking your life.”
Barbados Agricultural Society chief executive James Paul tells Barbados Today he is advising those who discover marijuana plots to notify the police immediately.
“I think they need to give the information to the police so that they can deal with the matter,” he says, somewhat optimistically.
“If they know where these things are then they need to provide the information to the police so that the police could act on the matter. If they don’t share the information with police, then how could they expect police to help them?”