The Bangladesh Small and Cottage Industries Corporation (BSCIC) said it will lend all-out support to honey harvesting, which now is impeded by the movement restriction due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The ongoing control on movements is hindering beekeepers across the country from honey cultivation and honey hunters of the Sundarbans from collecting it.
Especially, honey hunters in the Sundarbans — the vast mangrove area in this delta — are experiencing inconveniences in this year's collection season, said a BSCIC press release yesterday.
The corporation Chairman Md Mustaq Hasan advised the Sundarbans honey hunters to contact Khulna, Bagerhat, Patuakhali, and Satkhira district-level BSCIC offices.
He assured of maximum help to the honey hunters in those districts and beekeepers across the country.
Honey collectors and farmers cultivate honey basically from October 15 to May 31 every year.
At present, there are 2,500 honey bee farms and more than 1.20 lakh bee boxes in Bangladesh. These farms produce 10,000 tonnes of raw honey a year.
As much as 8,000 tonnes of the sweet viscous food substance has been yielded so far during the ongoing honey collection season, says BSCIC honey farming project Director Khondoker Aminuzzaman.
The BSCIC also has six bee farming centres involving 8,000 farmers across the country. These farmers, mainly in northern parts of the country, cultivate honey at lychee orchards during the summer.
Bangladesh exports the food item to Japan, the world's biggest honey market, after meeting the local demands. The country began honey export to neighboring India first in the 90s.
BSCIC fears coronavirus fallout may hamper local honey production and export to the international market as well.