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Friday, 16 September 2016 09:14

Climate Change affects honey production in Balaka

Written by  Sunganani Monjeza.

Mzuzu, September 16: Honey production in Balaka West has dropped by 60 per cent from last year (2015) due to climate change whose effects have either caused too much rains or droughts.

Assistant Liaison Manager of One Village One Product, Samuel Mongora, told Malawi News Agency (Mana) Thursday the production of honey has been difficult in recent years due to negative effects of climate change, including inadequate rainfall.

“We experience a lot of challenges with climate change because last year we produced almost one tonne (1000 kilograms) of honey, but in this year’s farming season we have only managed 400 kilograms,” he said, adding that the figures represent a 60 per cent decline from last year’s harvest.

Due to dwindling honey production, Mongora advised bee farmers to look into other farming activities like making malambe juice and involving themselves in Bank Mkhonde, so that they can easily borrow money to start other businesses as alternatives.

Over 50 farmers have been practicing apiculture in Balaka West, however, due to unpredictable climatic changes, OVOP is encouraging the farmers to diversify into other businesses.

In Malawi, honey production has potential to improve household incomes amongst rural communities but it requires communities to preserve natural forests for the business to be effective and profitable.

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