Agriculture World

Landless Beekeepers will Soon Get the Status of Farmers

honey bee

Centre is in view of giving status of farmers to landless beekeepers while recognizing honeybees as inputs to agriculture & expanding the basket of beekeeping products, aiming to double farmers’ income by 2022.

Bibek Debroy headed Beekeeping development committee - under the Economic Advisory Council to the PM presented more than half-a-dozen recommendations to the Prime Minister to increase the contribution of the sector in attaining the 2022 target of doubling farmer revenue.

Beekeeping development committee was formed to identify ways of developing beekeeping in India that can help boost agricultural productivity, increase employment generation, enhance nutritional security & sustain biodiversity. It submitted the report to the Prime Minister.

According to the committee report, Centre must recognize honeybees as inputs to agriculture & consider landless beekeepers as farmers in addition to ensuring the plantation of bee friendly flora at suitable places.

The committee recommended that the Centre should institutionalize the National Bee Board & rename it as the Honey & Pollinators Board of India under the Ministry of Agriculture & Farmers’ Welfare.

It said, “Such a committee would engage in progressing beekeeping via multiple mechanisms like setting up of new integrated bee development centres, reinforcing existing ones, creating a honey price stabilization fund & collection of data on essential aspects of apiculture”.

beekeepers

As per the committee report, there is a need to simplify procedures & specify clear standards for ease of exporting honey & other bee products.

According to Food & Agricultural Organization record, in terms of honey output, India ranked 8th in 2017-18 in the world while China was on the top with a production level of 551 thousand tonnes.

The report also stated that beekeeping can’t be restricted to honey & wax only. It said, “Products like royal jelly, pollen, bee venom and propolis are also marketable and they can significantly help farmers in India”.

The report further said that the country has a potential of nearly 200 million bee colonies as against 3.4 million bee colonies at present. It added that increasing the number of bee colonies will not just boost production of bee-related products but will raise overall agricultural & horticultural output.

Source - Economic Times



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