Beekeeping has not been given much attention in Uganda’s development planning and yet it offers great prospects for poverty alleviation, improvement of household incomes, and family nutrition. Although beekeeping is an old practice in Uganda, it has been largely practiced traditionally.
Training in farming/agriculture has been concentrated on crop and livestock production. Thus beekeeping has not been strongly mainstreamed in Uganda’s agriculture and there is a need to reverse this trend. There is a need to improve the quality of honey and increase the number of bee products for the benefit of farmers. The beekeeping sector in the country can play a major role in sociology-economic development and environmental conservation. Beekeeping is a source of food (honey, pollen, and brood): raw material for various industries (beeswax candles, cosmetics, textiles, lubricants, etc), medicine, and income for beekeepers. Bees also provide pollination to both cultivated and natural plants.
Honey, the natural food of the honey bee, has many times been described as man’s sweetest food. The credit must never go to man but to the honeybee, which may be called “the golden insect”. The honeybee is well distributed over the globe except in the severe cold of the Polar Regions. Africa is blessed with numerous types of wild honey bees. They exist everywhere on the continent where man lives, from the equatorial evergreen rainforest to the desert oasis, although they are more numerous in the drier Savannah than in the wetter forest areas. They all produce honey, the nutritious natural food good for both man and animals.
In Uganda, most beekeeping training is based on the science and art
of beekeeping, emphasizing the production of raw/crude honey. Most
beekeepers do not have adequate skills and techniques for adding value
to honey and other bee products. This is despite the fact that honey
is the cheapest bee product
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