Honey park proposed at Bhagamandala

State government has already released `60 lakh

Honey park proposed at Bhagamandala

To bring back the glory of honey production in Kodagu, the State government has come forward to set up a honey park in Bhagamandala. The State government has already released Rs 60 lakh and primary preparations are in progress. 

The Honey Park would act as a comprehensive centre for honey production and related activities. It would also endeavour to provide marketing facilities for the product in the entire State. The park will come up in Apiculture Training Centre at Bhagamandala. The Park will be maintained by food processing division of Agriculture department. 

The Park will be set up to promote apiculture, which will supplement the income of the farmers. Agriculture department in-charge Secretary and Director of Horticulture department have already held talks with farmers on the structure of the Honey Park, and a proposal has been sent to the government. There are more than 10,000 farmers engaged in apiculture in Kodagu district. Apiculture has spread to Chikmagalur, Shimoga, Dakshina Kannada, Uttara Kannada, Mysore and Chamarajanagara. Owing to diseases affecting honey bees, apiculture had seen a set back in the recent years. 

Apiculture was ruling the roost in Kodagu two decades ago. There were bee hives in each and every plantation. Apiculturists were getting 10 to 15 kg of honey from one bee hive. However, now it has reduced to six to seven kg honey, said Apiculturist C Madappa. 

“With diseases affecting honey bees, apiculture saw a set back in the district. In the first phase, honey bees will be nurtured in the Park. Later, a research unit, museum on apiculture, honey processing unit, and an export unit will be set up.” 

Along with Honey Park, a training centre will also be set up. Tribals and farmers will be trained in apiculture. The tribals will be trained in collecting honey in forests. This in turn will help in improving the economic condition, said Horticulture Department Deputy Director (in charge) S N Sudheendra Kumar. 

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