Efforts are underway with financial assistance from the Canadian Government, to give a boost to the bee keeping industry in Dominica.
The industry was dealt a severe blow when more than 36 bee hives were wiped out during the collapse of the Matthieu Dam last year.
President of the Bee Keepers Cooperative Society Ltd, Lennox Fagan, says more than $60,000 has been made available by the Canadian government, part of which is being used for training projects. He said some of the money was also used to replace lost hives.
More than twenty people involved bee keeping in Dominica are currently participating in a workshop geared at enhancing their skills in that sector. Participants will, among other things, receive practical training on the extraction of honey and how to construct proper hives.
“The training is essential to the bee keepers on the island. We are targeting those involved in the sector and those who are unemployed too. This is the culmination of the program however we will be doing an ongoing training with them,” Fagan said.
However, Fagan says it will take many months of hard work and preparation to “bounce back” from the Matthieu Dam loss.
“Right now we are also suffering from the weather. Climate change is also an issue. This year we didn’t experience a good honey production. Sometimes you find a lot of rain and too much sun,” he said.
According to Fagan, the bee keeping industry is a profitable one, however, he is concerned that the record keeping process is not always done properly.