The Ups and Downs of Global Beekeeping
Beekeeping Is taking off around the world in a whole new way.
There have always been beekeepers, since ancient times, just about everywhere in this world.
Lately, there seems to be a beekeeping renaissance. It is being seen as an ideal opportunity, especially in underdeveloped countries, for people with fewer prospects to step up to a more prosperous life.
Honeybees not only produce liquid gold in the form of honey, but they also bestow income opportunities on people who are willing to be diligent, mindful, and responsible in caring for them.
Keeping bees is also a way to heal the damage we have wrought upon the land. And to build food security in places where such things are never far from the surface. But it is not all milk and honey, nor sunshine and roses, as can be seen from the articles curated below. Things can go very wrong.
Many of our blog posts in the past two years have addressed beekeeping in diverse parts of the world, and how it improves the lives of people while maintaining a bond with nature. Scroll through our blog posts to discover some of the stories we have shared of bees and their people in faraway lands.
Bees are a highly intelligent force of nature. As people who work with bees will tell you, there is so much we can learn from them. They are an example to us of what unity and selfless service really means.
Today, we share some links to fascinating articles we have seen this week on how beekeeping is gaining in popularity in some distant places (depending on where you live) and how the people there benefit from their relationship with honeybees. We also share some stories on bee disasters that are being rectified thanks to dedicated bee missionaries and visionaries.
On the island of Bahrain, beekeeping is becoming a popular hobby. Two men, Sami Al Mandeel and Fadhel Bin Radhi, are partners in a bee business. Under their guidance, beekeeping has already grown substantially in Bahrain. Even more important is the fact that they are reeducating farmers on the need to use less pesticide and instead, work more with bees. In this way they are having a vital impact on the wellbeing of their island’s natural environment. Read the story here.
This unrelated 3:05-minute video by Charitable Miracle Beekeepers shows how Georgia in the Caucasus Mountains is the cradle of the world's oldest honey, which has been found by archaeologists to be between 5,500 and 7,000 years old:
Mmabatho Portia Morudi is passionate about helping people to start a beekeeping business in Mzansi, South Africa. She runs a beekeeping business on her farm, Iliju Bee Farm, in Winterveld. Her passion ignited when she got involved in saving the endangered African bee, and it morphed and merged with her other interests, economic development, and food security challenges. She is a dynamic champion for bees, people, and nature as she spearheads these important themes. Read the story here.
This article discusses how beekeeping is returning to such places as Nepal, where the bees became scarce due to overuse of pesticides; the Caucasus highlands of Georgia, where ancient beekeeping practices almost died out entirely, and the island of Puerto Rico, where Hurricane Maria killed about 80% of the bee population. Scientists discovered that the Puerto Rican honeybee is more resilient to disease and parasites, so their genes may help build stronger hives in places where bees are in decline globally. All of this is thanks to aid from the humanitarian organization, Mercy Corps.
And last but not least today, in Kenya, beekeepers suffered losses by way of collateral damage. Kenya has been plagued with locusts in recent times, so the 2020-2021 aerial pesticide spraying to eradicate the locusts has also killed millions of bees. This threatens livelihoods and food security. To read this article, you must register for free.
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