PR – Beehive experts from Argentine are assisting Grenada as the country makes moves to boost honey production.
A visiting delegation has been assisting local Beekeepers strengthen capacity in areas of queen rearing, disease management of hives, and monitoring of queen stock.
The delegation comprised of Technical Experts, Elian Tourn and Cecelia Pellegini.
The Ministry of Agriculture & Lands, Fisheries & Cooperatives has welcomed the technical team of apiary experts leading a training workshop and predicts increase benefits for the sector, as a result.
“We have to understand the food safety standards and the protocols that we must follow in terms of building that industry,” declared Permanent Secretary, Aaron Francois at the opening of the workshop on Friday, October 28th.
“We need to build a strong Grenada product that we can trade on any part of the international market”.
Francois, who has experience working in Trade, explained the need for Beekeepers to organise themselves to lobby as a collective body and maintain the same standards across the board.
“We have the creativity and talent to move the industry forward,” he said. “We also have to deal with the production issues, such as queen rearing, and address the other challenges.”
According to Elain Tourn, the exchange is helpful and aim to improve the queen stock.
“We hope to use the information about queen rearing and bee health management to improve the queen stock and beehives in all countries in the Caribbean, while at the same time controlling the Varroa mites.” Said Tourn
The workshop participants spoke of the importance of this type of training to the industry.
“It would be good to know how to handle my bees properly to improve my production. This will help to ensure that I have sufficient honey and honey products so I can offer for sale in the future,” explained Alecia Mason.
“This is very important and can be one of the stepping-stones to a breeding programme that can be essential for the catalysing of bees and the apiculture industry, “another participant, Dwayne Mitchell, remarked.
The workshop was part of the API Caribe Project, a regional initiative spearheaded by the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA), through support from the Government of Argentina and the Ministry of Agriculture & Lands, Fisheries & Cooperatives.
API Caribe Phase I began in July 2019 and was developed through cooperation between four countries.
Grenada benefits from Phase II of the project, which will also improve the capacity to test honey quality and support the development of queen-rearing stations.