As part of the efforts to create wealth and generate employment opportunities through commercial bees and honey production in the country, an agency of the Federal Government, Benin Owena River Basin Development Authority (BORBDA) has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with three foreign companies for the commencement of production.
BORBDA signed the MOU with three foreign companies- Dinotrust Global Company Limited, Koster Keunen West Africa and
Old Levi Multibiz Services Limited to train the youths in the production of bees and honey as well as distribution of the product.
The MOU was signed at the headquarters of the agency in Benin City to commence the training and production in Edo, Delta, Ekiti and Ondo.
Speaking on the development, Saliu Ahmed, managing director of BORBDA, said the agency was collaborating with the firms to buy off the bees and honey produced by the bee farmers in the affected states, especially those produced by the graduates trained and nurtured under the agency’s Graduate Youth Empowerment and Entrepreneurship Scheme.
Ahmed said the MOU was a further testimony of the agency’s commitment to providing a ready market to the honey and bee produce produced by the bee farmers, adding that no fewer than 30 graduates have so far been trained in three senatorial districts of Edo State, and 40 graduates in Delta, Ekiti and Ondo States between 2018 when the scheme was initiated and 2019.
Earlier, Nasser Bembah Bahisa, representative of Koster Keunen West Africa, a foreign lead agency, expressed confidence that the agreement would provide the tonic needed to grow the honey and bee products business in Nigeria and indeed the West African sub-region.
Femi Awoyemi, the representative of Old Levi Multibiz Services Limited, who spoke on behalf of other foreign partners, expressed commitment to the agreement with BORBDA. He listed some of the factors to include pre-harvest theft and destruction of honey fields by unauthorized persons and poor processing of the by-products which reduce their market value.
Also speaking, the permanent secretary, Ministry of Water Resources Edo State, Akongie Oboh, commended BORBDA for the concept of modern beekeeping in the state.