By Prince Arinze Onebunne
Beekeeping is the maintenance of honey bee colonies, commonly in hives, by humans. A bee keeper keeps bees in order to collect their honey and other products that hive produces to pollinate crops, or to produce bees for sale to other beekeepers.
Apart from the fact that honey and other resources generated from bees have huge economic potentials for export, bee-keeping is capable of looking after millions of jobless Nigerians. Bees contribute about $80billion annually to the economy of the United State and the Country import about one-third of these bee resources to substantiate its local production. Other countries such as Germany, Russia and Britain import bees and its resources which are used in different sector of the economy.
There is increasing awareness on the therapeutic values of honey. Unlike other therapies, it has no historical dwindling effectiveness on any disease. Since the advent of apitheraphy till date, the efficacy of honey in preventive and curative treatments has been on the increase as mans knowledge of it increases. There is no known side effect of honey as it is the case with all medicinal drugs. One of the most interesting aspects of honey – diet is in its effective way of correcting speedily, the malfunctioning of human organs.
People keep bees for various reasons, such as for honey, royal jelly, propolis, bee venom, pollen (bee-bread) and bees wax for their ability to serve as pollinators of crop, or simply for the fun of learning more about the interesting and complex insects. Honeybees live in complex communities that may contain as many as 150,000 members. The vast majority of these is the unfertile female bees known as workers, they run the hive; feed and clean the queen; gather nectar, pollen, and water.
Bees use honey for their food and the excess they now pass out as waste into the combs which man collects and presses out as raw honey.
Countless thousand of people worldwide are processing this bee ‘waste’ into honey, exporting it and quietly making their millions by the day. There are no less than 30-exciting reasons why you should be involved in bee keeping business.
To start the business, a beekeeper must find a suitable location, gather the proper equipment. It is always a good idea to go for training before you get started. Bees are very easy to manage; you don’t need to cater for them like in other livestock farming. They can clean themselves, fetch their own food and water and store your harvest.
The fact that honeybees practically take care of themselves is really only a small part of their appeal. A honey colony is a mysterious and independent creation. Working with bees is a challenge and lesson in cooperation, not domination….a rare human-to-nature experience these days.
When you raise your own bees, you will be rewarded in fresh and original honey that puts adulterated roadside-bought honey to shame. You can learn how to raise honeybees that will provide you with excitement and sweetness and income for years to come. Beekeepers live longer than anyone else”. It’s a low-input and labour – saving venture.
Many beekeepers firmly believe that tending bees reduces stress. Working with bees is so calming and almost magical. You feel at home with nature, and whatever problems may have been on your mind tend to evaporate. Any health food store proprietor can tell you the benefits of the bees’ products. Honey, pollen, royal jelly, and propolis have been a part of healthful remedies for centuries. Honey and propolis have significant antibacterial qualities. Royal jelly is loaded with B vitamins and is widely used overseas as a dietary and fertility stimulant. Pollen is high in high protein and can be used as a homeopathic remedy for seasonal pollen allergies.
Apitherapy is the use of bee products for treating health disorders. Even the bees’ venom plays an important role here — in bee-sting therapy. Venom is administered with success to patients who suffer from arthritis and other medical conditions. This entire area has become a science in itself and has been practiced for thousands of years in Asia, USA, and Europe.
There is no doubt, that Nigeria has comparative advantage in the business of bee keeping than those developed countries because the nations climate condition supports this lucrative business of bee keeping all year round. With good knowledge of bee keeping, the country has the capacity to sustain local production and assist in saving and earning huge foreign exchange for Nigeria.
Jovana farms organizes nationwide sensitization seminars on the practical ways of making it through small scale animal farming. Attend our nationwide seminars nearest to you and know more opportunities in beekeeping and other small animal farming. Visit us at: www.jovanafarm.com for more details TEL: 08033262 808, E-mail: [email protected]