The Success Story Of A Beekeeper
It is heart-warming to learn that the district is considering Honey Processing and Packaging as its portion of governments 'One District One Factory' Policy.
Mr. Tetteh Kwao is a 58 year old Beekeeper at Fosukrom in the Bia East District. He is a native of Somanya in the Eastern Region of Ghana. Mr Tetteh Kwao has been a farmer in Cocoa, Citrus and Oil palm for over twenty-five (25) years. These farms had been his source of livelihood for himself and family for all the years he has been farming. Despite his love for crop farming, he also developed a greater love and passion for Beekeeping after seeing a beehive from a friend’s farm in the Eastern Region. He decided to try it in his own farm in the Bia East District with only one beehive constructed by himself. He also bought a book on beekeeping and started reading to broaden his knowledge in his new business. According to him the hive got colonised just after two weeks of planting it so he was encouraged to add four more hives to bring the number to five within three months.
Mr Tetteh Kwao became a client of the BAC in 2014 when a Business Orientation and Sensitization Seminar was organised in Fosukrom which he attended. After the programme, he met with the BAC officers for more enquiries about beekeeping. He was assured that a training programme in beekeeping had been scheduled in two weeks so he could take part.
He actively participated in the beekeeping training which was held at Camp 15 Junction in 2014. The training targeted most of the unemployed graduates and the youth in the area and more especially the few individuals who were interested in beekeeping as a business.
After the training, Mr Tetteh Kwao increased the number of his beehives to thirty. Within six months of planting the hives, he harvested about 200 litres of pure honey and he made very good sales.
This encouraged him to keep increasing the number of beehives and as at now he has almost one hundred and fifty beehives all planted on his farms.
One important innovation he learnt from the beekeeping training was that planting the beehives in his cocoa, citrus and oil palm farms was going to result in better pollination of his crops by the bees and that would increase his crop yield as well as the honey. Truly, this has worked very well for him such that he has experienced about a doubled increase in crop yield for all the three major cash crops. Also, the beehives get full within three to four months and so he harvests about three times in a year. Averagely, he harvests about one thousand litres of pure natural honey every year. This has resulted in increased income and improved livelihood for his entire family. Mr Tetteh Kwao keeps simple business records. He has adopted a business name THE BEES NATURAL HONEY and according to him, he got this name from his friend whose business inspired his love for beekeeping. They planned that if they become successful in the beekeeping business future they would buy cars and put the inscription ‘THE BEES’ on them. He decided to use it as his business name.
He actively participated in the 2016 REP Client Exhibition and Trade Show at the West Hills Mall-Weija, in the Ga South Municipality in the Greater Accra Region.
Mr. Tetteh Kwao has become a role model for many in the District. His success has encouraged many more people in most of the communities in the District to take to beekeeping as a business.