EU to support initiatives that engage women in apiculture

By Valentine Oforo , The Guardian
Published at 06:32 AM Jun 21 2024
Woman farmer
Photo: File
Woman farmer

THE European Union (EU) has expressed commitment to support initiatives that foster gender equality and provide opportunity for women participation in beekeeping and honey value addition in Tanzania.

This was said on Wednesday evening by Head of Natural Resources at the Delegation of the European Union to Tanzania Lamine Diallo in his remarks at the opening of the maiden honey exhibition dubbed Tanzania Honey Show 2024.

He said that gender inclusion in the beekeeping sector, especially empowering women beekeepers to venture more into professional honey processing and value addition was necessary for sustainable development of the apiculture industry in Tanzania.

Diallo said Tanzania is renowned globally for high quality honey which is exported to various international markets, contributing significantly to the economy of the country, but efforts must be made to attract more women into the sector.

“It is for this reason that the EU is a committed partner in supporting the beekeeping industry in Tanzania,” he said.

According to him, EU has availed a total of 10 million euros, equivalent to 28bn/- for implementing Beekeeping Value Chain Support (BEVAC) project in Tanzania, the initiative dedicated to enhancing beekeeping value chain in Tanzania.

“BEVAC is being implemented by the Belgian Development Agency Enabel and it operates under coordination of the Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism and it has already impacted more than 4,000 beekeepers in Tanzania, including women beekeepers,” he said.

In her remarks to grace the three-day event taking place at the Julius Nyerere International Conference Centre (JNICC) under the theme  ‘Beyond Hives, Beyond Boarders’, Minister for Natural Resources and Tourism Angellah Kairuki hailed the EU for the continued support for the sector.

She said beekeeping employs over 2 million people in the country and despite offering numerous socioeconomic benefits, its players lack needed financial assistance.

“The government values the support given by different stakeholders to beekeepers to transform their lives,” she said.

The minister added that the event organized by Tanzania Honey Junction in collaboration with BEVAC serves as a podium for the country to prepare to host the 50th edition of the International Apicultural Congress to be held in 2027 in Arusha.