Honey consumption in India has seen steady growth over the last some decades. In India, the major consumption of honey is made by medicine manufacturing firms. The other chief product obtained from bee colonies – beeswax’ is fundamentally utilized in the manufacturing of pharmaceuticals, cosmetics soaps, etc.
With persistent effort and dedicated programs such as the honey mission in India, honey production has found a huge growth. It has perceived a 200 percent increase in 12 years.
Current development of Beekeeping sector, revenue growth, and employment opportunities:
According to the National Bee Board, under the agricultural department, India’s honey production in 2017-2018 was 1.05 lakh metric tons (MTs) as compared to the 35,000 metric tons (MTs) honey production in 2005-06. Currently, India has 35 lakh bee colonies as compared to 8 lakh bee colonies in 2005-06. The number of bookkeeping companies and societies has also incremented and as of January 2019, there are 9091 registered people in apiary business.
As per the International demand, the export rate of honey in India was 50%. But now it has been increased by 207%.
Indian Government plans to establish an Integrated Bookkeeping Development Centre in the 16 states of the country. Those will be in Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Jammu and Kashmir, Haryana, Uttarakhand, West Bengal, Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka, Bihar, Manipur, Tripura, Arunachal Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Delhi, Punjab, and Uttar Pradesh.
Significantly, Fertilization by honey bees at the farms increased the crop yield manifold. Agricultural experts say that additional yield obtained due to the fertilization of honey bees is 15 to 20 times than the money generated by stockpile products.
According to the recent report of the Indian Government, the large scale employment in the beekeeping sector is estimated to create 3 lakh jobs by setting up 10,000 bookkeeping colonies.
Challenges faced by Beekeeping sector
Sometimes the bookkeeping sector faces challenges such as destruction of honey bees due to drastic climatic change. Along with this winter has affected nectar secretion in several parts of the country.
Another main challenge faced by the beekeeping sector is that the bee-eaters in the Himalayas (a bird that eats honey bees) migrated to Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh due to huge climatic change in winter. Due to this, Apis Mallefera bees of these both of the states were hit by Himalayan bee-eaters. This drove the big loss in the beekeeping sector. Similarly, farmers who cultivate only sugar canes have limited the scope for honey bee variants. Even this is also a not good sign for the beekeeping sector.