How To Start A Lucrative Bee Farming Business In Nigeria: The Complete Guide
The first thought that pops up when referring to bee farming is the risk involved from the stings of the bees. But while the venture could be life-threatening, the honey produced from the farming operation is highly lucrative both locally and on the international market, and there are various safety measures that make farming bees almost risk-free.
Bee farming is a high-risk, high-reward venture, with high-profit margins and a fast turn over. Approximately 1.8 million tons of honey was produced in 2016, and more than 25% of this number was produced by China. The Central African Republic consumes more honey than anywhere else in the world, followed by New Zealand and Slovenia.
Nigeria presently produces only around 2,500 metric tones of honey which is less than its 7,500 metric tonnes production capacity.
With a large gap between the country’s production capacity and the actual amount of honey produced, tremendous opportunity for investments in the profitable honey farming business is being left on the table.
If you’re looking for a great farming business to start, bee farming in Nigeria is a place to start.
What Are Bees?
A bee is a stinging winged insect which collects nectar and pollen, produces wax and honey, and lives in large communities.
What Is Bee Farming?
Bee farming, which is also known as beekeeping, is the maintenance of bee colonies, commonly in man-made hives, to produce honey both for local consumption and commercial purposes.
Business Opportunities In Bee Farming
1). Production Of Medicine:
Honey made from bees are said to be medicinal and can be used in the treatment of eye disease, throat infections, and many other ailments.
2). Used As Sweetener:
Honey is generally used as sweeteners in foods and drinks.
3). Confectionaries And Baking:
Honey is used in the production of sweets, confectionaries and also often used in baking.
Facts And Benefits Of Bee Farming
- Honey bees must gather enough nectar from about two million flowers to make one pound of honey.
- A honey bee visits about 50 to 100 flowers during a collection trip.
- The average bee will make only a twelfth part of a teaspoon of honey in its lifetime.
- A colony of bees may consist of 20,000-60,000 honey bees and one queen. The Worker honey bees are female, live for about six weeks and do all the work.
- Honey has always been seen as a medicine. It is said to help with everything from sore throats and digestive disorders to skin problems.
- Honey can be used as an antiseptic and is used as a dressing for wounds as a first-aid treatment for minor burns and cuts.
- The fruit sugars in honey – fructose and glucose – are quickly digested by the body.
- Honey bees have been producing honey for 150 million years.
- Honey bees are the only insects that produce food eaten by man.
- Honey never gets spoilt or fermented, and it can be said to last for over 2000 years.
- The buzz bees’ make, is the sound made by their wings which beat about 11,400 times per minute.
- When a honey bee finds a great source of nectar, it goes back to the hive and shows other bees the nectar source.
Types Of Bees
There are over a thousand species of bees some of which are;
1). Honey Bee:
A honey bee is a eusocial flying insect within the genus Apis of the bee clade, they are social bees, live in colonies and are commonly known for their honey production.
Bumblebees belong to the genus Bombus, part of the Apidae bee family. This genus is the only existing group in the tribe Bombini. Bumblebees have their own version of honey, but it is not really honey exactly.
How To Start Bee Farming In Nigeria: Step By Step Guide
Starting a honey bee farming business in Nigeria is cheaper than most other businesses because of the low costs involved in the production of honey. While a large part of the costs will go into the construction of long-lasting boxes where the bees will build their hive, purchasing protective gears for stings from bees is also critical cost & requirement for bee farmers.
It’s key to get comprehensive training on bee farming before anything because this is the first and most crucial aspect of the business because bee farming is very technical and high risk, and so, requires a lot of training before you venture into it.
2). Choose A Right location:
Honey bees strive when they are around fruit trees where they can quickly get nectar, so when choosing your location, choose a location close to fruit trees.
3). Caring For The Bee:
This is a very import part of the bee farming as it determines your yield and productivity. As a complicated process, it’s best to stick to the training you gained at first and regularly provide their food, water, and medicine.
Sales are the lifeblood of every business, and so, it is key that you understand how to find buyers for the honey your bee farm produces.
Challenges of Bee farming In Nigeria
Here are some challenges that can affect starting bee farming in Nigeria, Africa, or many other places around the world:
- Poor government incentives
- Shortage of skilled labour in handling bees
- Inadequate or poor infrastructure
- Bee farming is done in the traditional local methods
- Neglect of the government on bee farming
- Poor funding of research activities
- Pest and diseases
- Bush burning
- Lack of efficient storage facilities
- Lack of capital for large scale production
- Lack of easy access to the international market
- Instability of the international market price
- Lack of adequate widespread knowledge on how to produce high-quality products
- Lack of funds to import international standard processing machinery
- Thieves and criminals
Sum It Up
If you can withstand the hazards of bee farming, the bee farming business in Nigeria can be a lucrative and profitable venture to start up due to its vast market demands and on your own ability to build a wide supply chain network.
If you’re looking for a farming business to venture into, the bee farming business in Nigeria is a great option to explore.
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