The Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency (TİKA) is helping Kosovo boost its beekeeping potential. It recently completed the first leg of a sustainable beekeeping project in the city of Podujeva.
The country has good potential for beekeeping due to its climate and flora. Kosovo’s Agriculture, Forestry and Rural Development Ministry has prioritized the sector for further development.
Currently, domestic production meets 92% of local demand while the rest depends on imports.
TİKA’s project looks to promote sustainable beekeeping in Podujeva, a city in the district of Prizren.
The agency helps with increasing the number of beehives, modernization of equipment for hygienic bee production as well as with boosting organic, certified honey production, protection of bee health and bee products.
For 80 days, TİKA, which cooperated with local E Bukura Mbretereshe Association, trained 70 beekeepers. At the end of the project, 1,050 beehives with bees were donated to Kosovo by the agency.
The project will contribute more than 500,000 euros ($555,292) to Podujeva's economy in three years. As of 2020, beekeepers will be able to produce high-value products like honey, propolis and royal jelly or milk bee.
Beekeeping has provided a source of new income for families, saving them from dependence on farming. It is a low-cost sector easily creating employment and for some families in rural areas, it creates extra income in addition to other agricultural activities.