Beekeepers told to focus on areas of concern

Dr. Reginald Thomas

Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Agriculture, Food & Fisheries, Dr. Reginald Thomas has said there are several areas of concern in the honey bee industry that focus should be placed on.

Dr. Thomas who was also representing Minister of Agriculture, Food & Fisheries Dr. Reginald Austrie was speaking at the Beekeepers Cooperative stakeholders’ conference held at the Prevost Cinemall on Tuesday.

“There are several areas of concern in the industry that we have to focus on,” he said. “Processing is one, do we do individual processing or do we look at central processing, the marketing of the honey and the honey product?”

He pointed out there are other honey-related products that can be exported.

“So exporting honey is all well and good but there are several other products that can be derived,” Dr. Thomas explained. “There is much more value addition that can be done to that product and I think that is where the money lies.”

He went on to say that, “there has been a concern where we sell ourselves short” by selling primary products without having the proper systems in place for marketing.

“So we have gotten into the practice of selling honey to our French neighbors…we get the peanuts out of it, the peanuts seem very good to us but we get the peanuts of it,” Dr. Thomas remarked. “I have been to the French islands and I have seen their set up and our honey is world-class honey and they know that…”

Dr. Thomas said further, “As we look forward we want to look at how as a country we derive all the benefits that can be derived from the honey production.”

He said the area of disease surveillance should also be considered.

“Being able to ensure that this country remains free from some of the dangerous diseases that exist,” he noted., “As a ministry, we have taken the policy not to import bees…that is a decision we took and we will continue to keep to that policy.”

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3 Comments

  1. Harmony Delase
    July 27, 2018

    I thank God your country has vision on bee keeping. And l pray that the good hand of the Lord who created the bees and want it to benefit mankind help your to do excellent work of promoting bee keeping for your country.

  2. Progress
    July 25, 2018

    Reggie when you bring back our parrots, I will listen to what you have to say

  3. R. Linton
    July 25, 2018

    What about the concerns raised Re: the dangerous chemicals farmers continue to use, with NO regards to the environment?… They are killing our bees. What national policies will be put in place to slim line the type of chemicals imported?.. while it is clear we need to move in the direction of more friendly green products in controlling insect, pest, and weeds?
    We certainly don’t want external bees mixing with our indigenous bees, but if the ministry/farmers does not set its priorities straight, we will soon be importing foreign bees to repopulate our exterminated majestic creatures.

    The authorities needs to work hand in hand to get a win win situation. We need radical solutions….Fed up with Talks!!! Talks with NO ACTION is a Pest in itself.

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