Bee keepers told to tap into BIMP-EAGA market
BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN
LOCAL honey product business owners are urged to leverage on Brunei’s ideal location to export to neighbouring countries, said an invited speaker from Malaysia.
Speaking on the sidelines of the ‘Conservation of Stingless Bees’ course at the Rimba Horticulture Centre, Abu Hassan Jalil said Brunei is in the centre of BIMP-EAGA, therefore, has high potential of exporting the local honey products to Indonesia, Malaysia and Philippines.
“Being in the centre, you have the potential and opportunity to market your products in the region. It is time for bee keepers to exploit this opportunity,” said the principal from Malaysia Kelulut (Stingless Bees) Academy.
According to Abu Hassan, Brunei has 22 species of stingless bees.
He said Brunei has smaller bees, in which he believes is beneficial as the smaller bees produce sweeter honey compared to its bigger counterparts found in other countries.
“The big ones produce honey (that) is a bit sour, but the smaller species, the honey they produce is a lot sweeter. From there, I see the potential is high,” he said.
When Abu Hassan spoke to several local business owners, he said he discovered that some of the locals have unknowingly tapped into neighbouring countries’ market.
He said a local business owner had received Filipino customers residing in Brunei where the foreign nationals bought the honey products and sent to the Philippines.
Abu Hassan encourages business owners to reach out to the customers to promote and sell their honey products.
He went on to say that the honey products can also be developed as there are over 3,000 recipes that can produce a honey product.
Meanwhile, the organiser of the course, Mitasby Hj Mamit, encouraged more people to take up the honey business to produce more products.
He said there are a variety of products that can be produced from a stingless bee’s honey, such as lotions, soaps and food products.
With more people venturing into the business, Mitasby believes the high demand of local honey products can be fulfilled.
“The more people get into the business, the better the business gets,” he said.
He said those who wish to venture into the business must ensure they provide enough resources for the stingless bees by providing nectar, propolis and pollen.
The Brunei Times