This year, Blak Nektar has invested in the Capucas Honey Bee project, an initiative we are delighted to support as the benefits to farming communities are substantial.
Honeybees offer our coffee farmers a number of advantages:
Farmers need viable income diversification strategies to help provide sustainable livelihoods. Honey production is a tried and tested strategy.
Improved Yields & Biodiversity:
Bees on the farm can promote pollination in coffee plants and other crops such as citrus and avocados. Research has shown it can increase productivity by up to 5% in coffee and up to 30% in other species.
50 smallholder farmers in the Capucas cooperative in Honduras have been selected based upon their interest, attitude and responsibility to assume the work of implementation.
The Capucas Cooperative has 800 active farmer members and borders the Celaque national park in Copan, western Honduras. We have worked with the cooperative for many years and most recently visited in March 2020.
Honey production is a tried and tested strategy at Capucas. The cooperative has provided technical assistance, training, financing and commercialization of Apis Melífera and Melipona honey. They have developed a small honey processing plant and a warehouse space where it is stored under conditions that ensure its quality.
The cooperative is one of only a handful of organisations with beekeepers legally registered according to the new apiculture regulation, making it ideally suited to feed the strong internal market in Honduras, which mostly relies on imported honey products. Capucas has ambitious plans for expansion and is looking to incorporate more producers into the process and strengthen the apiculture chain.
The project focusses on the implementation of 50 new apiaries for coffee families. Each apiary consists of 2 hives and all the infrastructure, equipment, materials necessary for beekeeping.
Individual farmers will need support to decide which bees and the type of hive to use, and to analyse the honey-bearing capacity on their farm based on the flowers, placement of hives, water availability etc.
Farmers will receive training in biology of bees and installation of the apiaries, modern management of hives, common diseases and how to treat them, multiplication of the hives, harvesting, honey processing and other derivatives.
The project will be managed by our partners at the Fundación Amigos del Café or “Friends of Coffee” Foundation. The Fundación will help with project evaluation and providing materials for communications such as photos and farmer case studies.
The Fundación will provide reports on each activity and progress reports, training reports with the topics of the module taught, results, photos, attendance lists and the material used for the training.
We look forward to sharing updates with you soon.
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