The ‘Honey Village’ of Jigme Chhoeling

Mar 08, 2014

More people in Jigme Chhoeling Gewog in Sarpang are rearing bees. Almost every household owns beehives. Known as ‘honey village’, the locals here were trained to use hive with open top and moveable frames. Of 150 households, more than 90% of them are into the beekeeping business.

A group called Samkhar Sibjam Gongphel Tshokpa was also formed in 2006 which claims to be doing a brisk business.

“In the last one year, we have seen a good progress and for 2015 we are hoping it will get even better. This year we are confident production would increase compared to past years,” said Manilal Rai, Chairman, Samkhar Sibjam Gongphel Tshokpa, Sarpang.

Manilal sold about 35 kilogrammes of honey during the last harvest season in November and December. He earned Nu. 600 for a kilogramme of honey.

Officials say beekeeping is easy and requires little investment and less man manpower.

“It depends on our hard work. In the past seven years, I have seen more and more people starting beekeeping business,” said Manilal.

He added with the cold climatic condition unfavourable for growing mandarin and other cash crops in upper Jigme Chhoeling, beekeeping was the best option.

The Tshokpa harvest twice a year, in June-July and November-December.  Each member extracts about 10 kilogrammes to 45 kilogrammes every season. It is then transported further to Bumthang and Gelephu.