Beekeeping expo targets media

If you want the world to know, then you need publicity. It’s a fact that’s got Africa’s honey producers buzzing.

The All-Africa International Honey Exposition, hosted by Zimbabwe, has identified the media as a key player in promoting beekeeping.

Organisers of the bi-annual event, taking place from October 4 to 12 in Harare are set to help media practitioners understand the importance of the honeybee industry, worth $200bn. The eight-day expo will attract around 3,000 delegates from 26 honey-producing countries.

As a prelude to the expo, organisers will hold a two-day symposium with the theme Let the conversation Bee-gin…and Grow. This will take place on October 4 and 5 and 30 foreign journalists from Europe, America and Asia will join 20 others from Africa.

The symposium is expected to awaken the media to the need to appreciate the honeybee industry in Africa and also build a good network with African journalists, for the purpose of promoting the interest of the industry.

“The media indaba aims at equipping and engaging African media and journalists to promote the multi-dimensional nature of the honeybee industry using the language of trade, environmental conservation and poverty eradication.

“Also covered will be the medicinal use of bee products, food security and climate change, among other attributes of the industry,” reads a statement from Media4Nature.

The project has also said it will train and provide exposure to 50 media practitioners from 10 African countries as a means of increasing the visibility of the honeybee industry.

Honeybees contribute over $200bn to the global economy through crop pollination and production of honey, beeswax and other bee products for the market.

Compared to other agricultural enterprises such as fish farming, poultry and livestock, beekeeping is a relatively low-cost, low-labour intensive enterprise that does not require a lot of land. This makes it viable for women, young people and other disadvantaged groups.

In Zimbabwe, area such as Mutasa, Chimanimani and Vumba have high numbers of beekeepers.

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