Kyrgyzstan's climate and unique geography makes it possible to produce high quality honey in large quantities. Our country has vast high-mountain pastures covered with a variety of honey-bearing plants.
On 20th August, a field day in the Uzgen district of Osh oblast saw the opening of a model beekeeping demonstration site.
“Hygiene, sanitary requirements, clean clothing and utensils are important when working with bees." said Muzafar Yusupov, the owner of the apiary where the site is located. He is a graduate of the Scientific and Research Institute of Beekeeping in Ryazan. He has inherited his love for bees. His father has been beekeeping all his life and passed on all the secrets of the craft.
However, beekeeping, like other sectors, is evolving and requires new approaches and new breeds. All this affects quality and quantity of bee products. In Kyrgyzstan, the problem is that there are no good specialists, no training materials, and no specific training institutions in the field.
In the framework of our project, we are training local beekeepers and introducing innovative methods in their practice. As honey is a food product, there are strict food safety requirements according to international standards. Here at the demonstration site you can clearly see how a place for honey pumping should be organized, how inventory and utensils should be kept, and where showers and toilets should be - shares Muzafar Yusupov.
The main purpose of the demonstration site is to reinforce the theoretical materials and training for beekeepers, disseminate the best practices of apiary management and establish communication for future interaction among stakeholders in the honey value chain.
The event was attended by representatives of the President's Office in Osh region, Uzgen, Kara-Suu district administrations, Republican Department of Agrarian Development, members of beekeeping cooperatives, partner organizations, interested farmers, honey processing and export companies and media.
Indicators of beekeeping production and export over the last five years generally show a positive trend. However, there are some problems hindering the development of the sector, though the potential of the sector is huge.
“In order to increase the productivity of the sector, the competitiveness of honey products, sales and exports, as well as new jobs and increased involvement of women in beekeeping, UNDP has launched the 'Aid for Trade' project," said Emil Yusupov, UNDP in Kyrgyzstan Expert in value chain said in his presentation.
The field day was an excellent platform for establishing dialogue and communication for better interaction among all stakeholders of the honey value chain. Thus, beginner beekeepers had an opportunity to discuss their issues with experienced beekeepers, suppliers of beekeeping equipment, honey buyers and their requirements, as well as Agrocredit Plus staff that provides facilitated financing under the project.
The initiative takes place in the framework of the Aid for Trade project, supported by the Finnish Government.