Bee farming funds not ready

National, Normal


THE K1 million allocated by the National Government for bee farming under the National Agriculture Development Plan is not yet available.
And at a time when the lucrative bee industry was being threatened by the mite, the need for funding was desperate, industry sources said in Bulolo last weekend.
They said the money was parked in an account of the Livestock Development Corporation in Port Moresby.
Eastern Highlands provincial beekeeping coordinator and team leader Tella Aloie and three other members said that there “was no sweetener for the honey industry”.
Mr Aloie said the industry had a bright future to contribute towards import replacement but needed the help of the National Government.
The country’s largest producers of honey are based in Goroka, Eastern Highlands province.
They produce 50 tonnes annually compared with imports of 150 tonnes.
A kilogram of honey fetches K10 while an import could cost up to five times more, the sources said.
However, the bee trainers in Goroka, who are the specialists in training the bee keepers, are currently in Bulolo district conducting the second batch of seminar. 
Mr Aloie and three of his bee-keeping trainers were in Bulolo at the request of Bulolo MP Sam Basil to conduct the second phase of training for farmers.