Tura: The North Eastern Hill University, the past week adopted many villages in the district of West Garo Hills into honey centres during a program held in the presence of the Vice Chancellor, PS Shukla, in the presence of the BDO of Gambegre, SG Momin, Prof Sujata Gurudev, the campus in-charge of NEHU Tura as well Dr R Sasikumar (Nodal Officer, Incubation Centre, NEHU, Tura Campus).
During the program, function manager, Frederick A Sangma (DCIC Tura & Nodal Officer, Apiculture Mission) gave a short introduction to the program.
Frederick also demonstrated to the people how beekeeping will help in the village’s development by improving the livelihood of future generations.
“Beekeeping promotes pollination and also produces honey which will give employment to the farmers doubling their income. The plants were selectively chosen for each month and grown so that there would not be a shortage of flowers for the bees to feed on. This is the reason for beekeeping being called a green industry,” stated Frederick.
Dr R. Sasikumar explained his journey towards the adoption of the honey village and how he and his team contacted the DCIC Tura to work together on the Apiculture Mission.
A skill training for potential apiculture farmers was conducted in the incubation centre of NEHU, Tura Campus with a total of 150 apiculture farmers from 5 villages, namely Aminda Ading, Aminda Rangsa, Aminda Simsanggre, and Chigitchakgre under Gambegre were chosen.
“The apiculture farmers were trained successfully and input supports were distributed. Each Apiculture Input Support kit includes bee boxes, bee nets, extractors, and other equipment and was funded under North East Hill (NEH) Scheme, ICAR. More apiculture input support will be provided based on the performance of the farmers,” informed a release by the University.
The NEH programme was implemented by ICAR-NIBSM, Raipur, Chhattisgarh in collaboration with NEHU at Meghalaya, in 2019 for the welfare and socio-economic development of farmers in the North Eastern Region (NER). The said scheme was implemented under the guidance and leadership of Dr P. K. Ghosh, Director, ICAR-NIBSM and Dr P. Mooventhan, Senior Scientist, Nodal Officer, ICAR NIBSM, coordinating all developmental activities with NEHU for the betterment of the farming community. In addition, a memorandum of understanding (MoU) was also signed between ICAR-NIBSM and NEHU under this programme.
Speaking on the occasion chief guest, Prof PS Shukla, VC of NEHU said he was deeply overwhelmed and cherished the initiative taken by the villages and residents for their decision to rear bees in every household.
As per NEHU, the incubation centre at the Tura campus will extend all types of support including capacity building, technical input, quality assurance, trade mark and branding and intelligent marketing at the domestic and international levels.
Prof Shukla also assured that the incubation centre would sign a buy-back agreement with appropriate governing bodies to popularise wild organic honey from Meghalaya origin into international markets.
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He also informed that to assure quality, the incubation centre has already established a well-equipped advanced food testing laboratory at the Tura Campus having full-fledged processing plants which are maintained by the campus.
Prof PS Shukla added that the honey villages will be able to produce 100% pure wild organic of the quantum of close to 10,000 kg/year through modern scientific methods with green processing and will be a role model for the entire nation. It will also enhance the livelihood standard of the village and help in the growth of the state overall.
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