Dept observes World Bee Day with 300 bee farmers

ITANAGAR, 20 May: The agriculture department celebrated World Bee Day at the banquet hall here on Friday with 300 progressive bee farmers from 11 districts of the state.

This year’s theme, ‘Bee engaged: Celebrating the diversity of bees and beekeeping systems’, highlights the significance of bees vis-à-vis food security and the environment.

Addressing the event, Khadi & Village Industries Commission (KVIC) Chairman Duyu Tamo informed that the central government has launched the “sweet kranti” initiative to encourage beekeeping in the country.

“KVIC Guwahati (Assam) is imparting training in various aspects of bee farming to the farmers of the Northeast,” he said.

The director of the Arunachal Bee & Honey Mission highlighted the bee farming activities carried out by the department in the 11 districts of the state.

Agriculture Minister Tage Taki inaugurated the product display and sales counter area, where honey and honey by-products were on display. The farmers sold about 500 kgs of honey during the event.

Taki interacted with the farmers and said that “bee rearing is not limited to commercial farming but to make the environment friendly also.”

He proposed to “streamline bee farming in the state by making it inclusive and including various departments like agriculture, horticulture, forest, KVIC, sericulture, and form a single nodal authority for bee farming.”

Taki said that the SHGs involved in bee farming should increase honey production, so that a production centre can be set up in the state.

The minister also highlighted the subsidy being provided by the state government to boost honey production, and asked the SHGs to “come forward with desired proposals and place for further course of action by the state government.”

Among others, the agriculture director, the agriculture marketing director, and officers from the agriculture directorate attended the event.

Meanwhile, the KVIC, in association with the Oju Welfare Association (OWA), celebrated the day at Oju Mission School in Papu Nallah on Friday.

SFURTI Project Officer Chetan Singh highlighted the vulnerabilities and the unique features of bees, and said that the bee population is decreasing mainly due to climate change.

OWA chairperson Ratan Anya also spoke.

The KVIC distributed honey to the participants as part of the programme.