Beekeeping increases crop production by 30 % in India:
New Delhi [India], January 15 (ANI): The Beekeeping industry helps increase crop productivity by 30 per cent and thus enhances the overall income of the farmers, the Chairman of Khadi and Village Industries Commission (KVIC) Manoj Kumar said.
“Beekeeping is the medium of sweet revolution, more income can be earned by joining this work,” Manoj Kumar said addressing the Khadi Honey Mission dialogue program in Haryana’s Kaithal which also included the distribution of 200 bee boxes to 20 beekeepers in its village Devra.
In his address, he also described the beekeeping industry as an eco-friendly industry, which not only generates income but also increases the productivity of the crop by 30 per cent by the pollen grains spread by the bees.
He said that considering the benefits of the industry, the country is now putting a lot of focus on it to produce more honey.
To achieve the goal of ‘Sweet Revolution in the country, the Government of India has approved a new Central Sector Scheme ‘National Beekeeping and Honey Mission’ (NBHM) for the overall promotion and development of scientific beekeeping and production of quality honey, along with other beehive products to encourage the holistic development of beekeeping.
The NBHM is said to follow three mini missions, namely, Mini Mission I under which the government will give a thrust to production and productivity improvement of various crops through pollination assisted by adoption of scientific beekeeping; Mini Mission II under which they will concentrate on post-harvest management of beekeeping and beehive products including the collection, processing, storage, marketing, value addition with a thrust to develop requisite infrastructural facilities for these activities; and Mini Mission III which will concentrate on Research and Technology generation for different Regions, States, and Agro-Climatic and Socio-Economic conditions.
The KVIC launched the Honey Mission Programe under the Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) during 2017-18 to promote Bee Keeping activities and provide self-sustaining employment opportunities among farmers, Adivasis and unemployed youth in the rural India, especially in economically backward and remote areas.
Under the said programme, the beneficiaries are provided with Bee Boxes, live bee colonies, tool kits and training. So far, 1 lakh 75 thousand bee boxes have been distributed by the Commission (KVIC) after providing beekeeping training to 17 thousand 500 beneficiaries across the country, a statement from Press Information Bureau said.
Meanwhile, a ‘Scheme of Fund for Regeneration of Traditional Industries’ (SFURTI) was also implemented by the Ministry of MSME, under which the traditional beekeepers are provided with sustainable employment by organizing them into clusters and supporting them with new machinery and training.
Under the NBHM scheme of the Ministry of Agriculture, scientific beekeeping is being promoted for holistic growth of the sector, leading to income and employment generation and livelihood support to farm and non-farm households.
A unique innovation was taken by KVIC in the form of a mobile honey process van in January 2022.
In a village of Uttar Pradesh, KVIC unveiled the first mobile honey processing van in the nation.
As it used to cost lot for small farmers and beekeepers to carry honey to processing facilities, the mobile honey processing van was launched to minimise the costs associated with honey extraction and processing. Also, with this van, the processing could take place at farmers’ or beekeepers’ doorsteps, thus preventing any possibility of honey adulteration.
Notably, Jharkhand is the state known best for the implementation of the sweet revolution. As the state’s climate is suitable for honey production, around 30 per cent of the land is covered by forest which is the most important resource for honey production. The KVIC has taken several training programmes in the state to leverage the opportunity.
India is one of the leading honey-exporting countries in the world. Organic honey produced in India reaches the markets of Germany, the USA, the UK, Japan, France, Italy, and Spain among others.
The country has exported about 74,413 metric tons (MT) of honey worth Rs 1,221.17 crore during 2021-22, majorly to the US, Saudi Arabia, Canada, Bangladesh and Qatar. About 13,000 beekeepers are currently registered on the National Bee Board, which is known to provide employment to more than 3 lakh rural people. (ANI)
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