The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), has cautioned the public against the destruction of honey bees, which eventually reduces the population of plants’ pollinators.
Professor Paul Bosu, Deputy Director-General (DG) of CSIR, noted that increasing the presence of pollinators could produce good crops yields and increase productivity, saying, 60 per cent or 70 per cent of all crops grown in Ghana and Africa, and at large the world, depends on pollinators.
He said there were sustainable ways of harvesting honey and with the requisite training, there was no need to set the bee hive on fire.
Prof Bosu made these remarks in an interview with the Ghana News Agency (GNA) on the side-line of a one-day Field-based Beekeeping Training Workshop at the Yenku Field Station of the CSIR- Forestry Research Institute of Ghana (FORIG) in the Central Region.
The workshop, organised by the CSIR- Modernizing Agriculture in Ghana (MAG) Coordinating Unit, aimed at equipping participants with the basic beekeeping technologies as a sustainable source for income generation.
The participants were taken through various topics such as Introduction to Beekeeping; Honey Bee Biology and Behaviour; Beehive; Beekeeping Equipment, Bee Plants; and Siting of Hives.
Prof Bosu, who highlighted the importance of beekeeping, noted that, Ghana’s numerous vegetation cover had lots of melliferous plants for bees to feed on, and this provided an opportunity for the youth to venture into beekeeping.
He said this would drastically reduce the unemployment situation and therefore, anticipated that the training workshop would equip participants with the requisite skills on best practices of bee keeping.
The Deputy DG stated that CSIR was currently working on a Canadian Government funded project called MAG, which aims at helping to improve agricultural productivity.
“CSIR’s role is to transfer the technologies that we have developed over the years through research to farmers through the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MoFA) Extension Agencies,” he added.
Mrs Naomi Appiah, Head of Commercialization Division of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research – Forest Research Institute of Ghana (CSIR-FORIG), speaking to the GNA also reiterated that honey production was a very profitable business venture.
She maintained that honey production had a huge market and that beekeepers could penetrate any market within Ghana and even international circles.
She said consumption of sugar was not encouraged by medical practitioners, considering the dangers it poses to people’s health system, hence, “honey is a good replacement of sugar”.
Mr Mustapha Campbell, Ayawaso Central Youth Coordinator at the National Youth Authority (NYA), one of the participants at the workshop, expressed gratitude to CSIR for organizing the training for them.
He also gave the assurance that he would put his acquired knowledge at the disposal of people who could not attend the training workshop.