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Panaji, May 20, 2020

Vaisakha 30, 1942

Goa is preparing to become hub for honey bee.  World bee day, celebrated today was special for mission of Khadi Village Industry Board of State Government to impart training more and more people into Beekeeping.  Target is to set up two clusters of honey production in State as commercial activity and make available natural honey for Goan as well as export of the same.

Forest density in the State is high with vide variety of Floura attracting bees for honey, which click the idea to harbour immense potential to develop apiculture or beekeeping activity as viable option as business activity.  The story starts from Governor’ palace at Cabo Donapoula. Then Governor of Goa, Smt. Mridula Sinha invited Khadi Village Industries Commission (KVIC) State Officials for training locals for pottery and bee keeping by providing space in Raj Bhavan premises in 2017-18.  The organisation of training programme for said activities conducted by KVIC Goa & Mumbai office with the support of Khadi & Village Board (KVIB) of Goa Government.

The response for beekeeping at Cabo Raj-bhavan inspired the officials of KVIB to draft the special scheme namely Scheme for Promotion of Beekeeping Industry in the State of Goa, with provision of Rs 75lakh for current financial year. KVIB is already in the mission of training from last year onwards and trained 43 farmers.  These trained farmers got 215 bee lives (honey bee boxes with the bee colony developed with bee green.

Goa KVIB roped in Agriculture Technology Management Agency (ATMA) of Agriculture Department to identify the farmers for basic training of beekeeping. 186 such farmers identified from Sattari, Bicholim, and trained them by both these institutions.  Interested farmers also trained as master trainer in the field at Central Beekeeping Research and Training Institute at Pune, so as to mobilize these trainers at village level to train the farmers.  Such two master trainers Shri Suprajit Raiker and Shri. Melvine D’Souza imparted the training to farmers.

Once the bee hives distribution crosses 500 number then the cluster formation under the Central Government Scheme of fund for Regeneration of traditional Industry is ready. Central Government provides support upto Rs. 8.00 crores to set up common facility Centre includes processing, testing, packing and branding of the products.   Ministry of MSME of Government of India extends the grant of 90% of Project Cost.

Goa State Biodiversity Board (GSBB) is specially looking at apiculture based on the point of view of conservation of population of local honey bees which are responsible for pollination and provides ecosystem as well as economical services. Since GSBB has taken up a plantation drive as well as compensatory afforestation in a big way the efforts are in the directions of creation of end to end system for apiculture promotion by involving local Biodiversity Management Committees across the State of Goa and the farmers.

The project with objective of achieving biodiversity conservation through livelihood intervention with brand name “GoVan” is aimed at strengthening process and marketing linkages to the honey producers in Goa.

As a part of above initiative over 50 farmers have been trained in apiculture and have been provided with the honey boxes and kits. Beside the selected farmer have also been supported for using bamboo and earthen pots for apiculture using locally available stingless species.

Government of Goa will provide honey hives costing Rs. 6000 with  90% subsidy to general category and  95% to 57 community farmer.  KVIB targeting Pernem, Bicholim and  Sattari talukas in North Goa and Canancona, Quepem, Sanguem, Dharbandora & Ponda in South Goa, which are having more potential. The youths in hinterland has got best opportunity to be the part of Honey mission in the State of Goa as additional income source.