Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Buzz of success for forest honey hunters

Provincial honey collectors sign sales contract

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Bees bred at the Tokyo Grain Exchange last year. Cambodian honey collectors are to see a rise in the amount of honey they bring to markets. Bloomberg
HONEY collectors from four provinces signed an agreement with the Cambodian Centre for Study and Development in Agriculture (CEDAC) Tuesday in order to bring more to market.

CEDAC president Yang Saing Koma told the Post that under the agreement bee-hunting communities would supply 4,000 litres of pure forest honey per year for sale in 10 shops across Phnom Penh.

“We hope that, through this agreement, CEDAC and forest honey hunter communities will benefit from both increasing their income and preserving natural resources for each community,” Yang Saing Koma said.

Pich Phony, president of the Cambodian Honey Hunter Community, which represents about 300 members in Mondulkiri, Koh Kong, Kratie and Preah Vihear provinces, said honey would be sold to CEDAC for US$9.70 per litre.

He added that the honey hunter communities in the four provinces are able to collect from 5,000 to 8,000 litres of honey in total per year at present.
According to MSME Bee Project, only 10 percent of the 500,000 litres of honey demanded domestically each year is currently supplied by Cambodia’s collectors.

It is hoped the deal will also help strengthen community conservation of hives and natural forest resources.

“Previously, we collected honey by cutting tree branches and then taking the whole nest, but we no longer do so now.

“We collect only the honey, and we leave the nest and young bees there so that they will produce honey again,” Pich Phony said.

CEDAC hopes to buy honey from collectors in three more provinces if the scheme goes well.

(source from Phnompenh post newspaper, Wednesday, 23 June 2010 15:01 Chun Sophal)

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