Vientiane Times, August 8, 2019
Beekeepers from four districts in Xieng Khuang province have been able to collect more than 12 tonnes of fresh, natural honey this year following below-average rainfall.
This year’s production represents a significant increase from 2018 when Paek, Phoukoud, Phaxay and Khoun districts managed just under eight tonnes of honey between them due to the exceptionally wet conditions.
The Agro-Biodiversity Initiative (TABI) of the National Agriculture and Forestry Research Institute, under the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, is supporting residents of the four districts to feed bees to produce honey and encourage commercial beekeeping.
This year’s yield exceeds TABI’s expectations as bees have been able to collect increased amounts of pollen from flowers, vegetables, and trees. An official with the Xieng Khuang provincial Agriculture and Forestry Department, Mr. Somkhuan Mittasy, said bees found it more challenging to locate food during the rainy season.
“Next year we plan to sell 500kg of honey to visitors coming here to celebrate the Plain of Jars being added to the list of World Heritage Sites and attend the 11th National Games in March. These sales will help boost the incomes of local people,” he said.
Meanwhile, TABI has been able to provide honey for markets and vendors in the province and Vientiane, with Vietnamese buyers also expressing interest.
“We can supply markets in Laos, but we are not yet ready to expand into neighboring countries,” Mr. Somkhuan added.
More than 40 residents from the four districts of Xieng Khuang are currently involved in the province’s honey production.
Credit: Cover photo from TABI