Beekeeping in East Africa is a traditional art and an opportunity to harvest and add value to local resources in order to generate wealth, employment, conserve our environment and reduce poverty.
East Africa has high potential in beekeeping with diverse floral sources. Baraka Agriculture College has been promoting sustainable beekeeping since 1974 through outreach programmes in Kenya and residential trainings to students and farmers. The College runs Beekeeping Development Centre focusing on beekeeping in East Africa—for research, manufacture and supply of beekeeping equipment, processing and marketing bee products and value added products from beekeeping; and capacity and capability building in sustainable beekeeping development.
The college has competent and committed beekeeping staff with a wide experience working with beekeepers in rural communities in East Africa.
It is a centre with a unique history — promoting ‘African Beekeeping’, learning with and building the skills and knowledge of beekeepers through participatory action research. The learning is field based-partly staying with the communities and working with them in the field.
Our new East Africa Beekeeping Pilot Project
- Our beekeeping outreach pilot project aims to improve the capacity and capability of existing and novice committed beekeepers across East Africa in high potential beekeeping areas of Kenya, Uganda and South Sudan.
- The project works in high potential beekeeping areas starting on 1st January 2021 until the end of December 2022.
- Our pilot project is funded by Misean Cara-Ireland
- We envisage assisting beekeepers to get organized into production units, build their skills and knowledge through practical skills training and the development of appropriate beekeeping husbandry practices and technologies and improve the supply of quality bee products across the three target East African Countries.
- The project also focuses on building the skills of 9 students from target communities for one year on Level 5 beekeeping course at Baraka Agriculture College, Kenya; and upon their completion of the course, assist in working with rural communities promoting beekeeping development work.
- The project works with potential beekeeping stakeholders; and will establish an East Africa beekeeping network for lessons learning on beekeeping
- The project also collaborates and works with potential beekeeping industry stakeholders from local and international NGOs, private organizations and Government agencies within and outside targeted regions
- Our pilot project works to link target beekeepers to the market outlets for selling quality honey for further value addition and promote consumer awareness aimed at increasing utilization of bee products across the three target countries. Already, Baraka Agriculture has well established and functional beekeeping developments centre that purchases and markets honey from beekeepers. Therefore the pilot project is market led and will facilitate links between beekeepers and market outlets.
- Promotion of environmental conservation. The project promotes beekeeping not only as an economic venture but also as an environmental conservation tool, improving the livelihoods of beekeeping communities.
Benefits of beekeeping and working with us:
- Skills and knowledge easily shared among beekeepers
- Organised groups easily get markets for their bee products
- Bee products such as honey bulking: buyers interest
- Standards are easily maintained; through traceability and quality monitoring of production of bee prodcuts
- Consolidation of bargaining power: seek better prices
- Beekeepers play big role in the chain, contributing to sustainability of beekeeping development work
To effectively implement the beekeeping prgrammes, the college aims at empowering rural communities in East Africa through:
- Certificate course on Apiculture management Level 5
- Comprehensive short courses programmes in specialized beekeeping courses :Beekeeping for beginners, beekeeping management skills, bee multiplication, manufacture of beekeeping equipment and value added products from beekeeping and marketing courses are provided
- Tailor made beekeeping courses are also designed and appropriately delivered basing on participants needs.
- Beekeeping development centres-for purchasing primary bee products from producers, adding value and marketing
- Sustainable Agriculture for rural development livelihood outreach programmes incorporating beekeeping
- Day release courses for farmers, colleges, schools and development agencies