PESHAWAR: Owing to Prime Minister Imran Khan’s direction to the governors of the four provinces to launch ‘Billion Tree Honey Initiative’ to promote the honey industry in the country, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) Governor Shah Farman on Friday sought suggestions from all the districts to formally start the plantation project.
Charring a meeting with the delegation of All Pakistan Beekeepers Exporters and Honey Traders Association (APBEHTA), the governor said, “The best quality honey is available in the country. Berry honey is preferred all over the world and the province has great potential in the production of berry honey. The testing of honey in line with the international standards would lead to a huge increase in the export and production of honey in the country.”
During the meeting, various issues came under discussion, including the challenges faced by the people involved in the honey business. The participants presented their suggestions for the production of honey in the country in accordance with the international standards.
Measures like vocational training for the people involved in honey business, healthy environment and spreading awareness among the population were also discussed in detail so that the quality of honey could be improved in the country.
The APBEHTA Senior Vice-President Sheikh Gul Bacha welcomed the initiative of the government and hoped that it would enhance honey production in the country. “The project would multiply honey production in the province, reduce the price of honey and increase its exports,” Bacha told Pakistan Today.
Bacha said that at present the honey industry has been severely affected by the coronavirus pandemic, as the prices of honey have increased, besides reduction in its export. He said that most of the honey is exported from Pakistan to Arab and European countries.
According to sources, the Saudi Arabia government had expressed its support for the project to activate the honey industry across Pakistan.
As per estimated figures, Karak district produces Rs6 billion worth of berry honey annually in the province. The beekeepers said that the production of honey will further increase, if the provincial government plants eco-friendly trees in other districts of the province under the initiative.