Rawalpindi: A three-day training workshop on modern beekeeping concluded at the Pir Mehr Ali Shah Arid Agriculture University in Rawalpindi (PMAS-AAUR), here Thursday.
The workshop was organized by the Entomology Department of PMAS-AAUR as part of the “Billion Tree Honey (BTH) Pilot Phase” project in collaboration with the Ministry of Climate Change (MoCC) of Pakistan, with the main aim of disseminate applied knowledge concerning modern beekeeping.
PMAS-AAUR Vice-Chancellor Professor Dr Qamar-uz-Zaman was the guest of honor while Punjab Assembly member (MPA) Asia Amjad was the guest of honor. During a three-day workshop, participants received hands-on training on honey bee pest and disease management, seasonal management of honey bees, honey harvesting, storage and marketing, honey production. royal jelly and other bee products and management of the honey market.
Prof Dr Qamar-uz-Zaman said Pakistan has great potential to increase honey yield by setting standards and new habitats. He said that the BTH-Pilot Phase project has been successfully executed by the university after the organization of this workshop. He said 35 beekeepers have been trained in modern beekeeping and the results provided a solid foundation for the preparation of a nationwide mega project “Beekeeping Intensification Program for Income and ‘rural employment (ASPIRE)’.
He said the University, in collaboration with the Ministry of Climate Change, will also establish accredited “Beekeeping Product Standardization and Formulation Laboratories” for research and development activities of all bee products. Findings from these labs will be shared with industry and government labs across the country for the scaling up and commercialization of all beekeeping products, he added.
Asiya Amjad said that the Prime Minister’s “One Billion Tree Honey Initiative” would not only be helpful in promoting tree planting and honey production, but also in reducing poverty. She said Pakistan is blessed with unmatched honey quality and taste in the world and hopes Pakistan will soon be among the top honey producers. She appreciated the leadership of the university for taking government initiatives to the fore and playing a vital role in boosting the beekeeping sector in Pakistan.
Professor Fayyaz ul Hassan Sahi, dean of the faculty of agricultural and food sciences, said that beekeeping is an important entrepreneur in Pakistan and has ensured full support not only for the establishment of modern beekeeping businesses, but also for a increased collaboration in other areas.