This project aims to build on the successes of previous years, and grow not only the number of beehives but also set up direct links between bee keepers and the local market to enable the sale of local honey, thus boosting the Gaza economy. This year, we wish to purchase 50 beehives and the bees to house them. This honey will be harvested responsibly twice a year, once in April and once in August.
Why is this project so important?
Although a new project for Interpal, the keeping of bees and harvesting of honey has been supported by the Palestinian Farmers Association for many years, as there are setbacks to this business that make the process of producing and selling honey very challenging. Even just a few years ago, bee keepers would earn a salary of around $40,000, however nowadays this is down to just a quarter of that.
With the Strip being a predominantly urban space, areas thick with trees for the bees to pollinate are hard to come by, meaning farmers often have to move their apiaries closer than is comfortable to the ‘buffer zone’. The buffer zone, or ‘no-go area’, runs some 50 meters wide and stretches the entire length of the wall encompassing an estimated 30-40% of Gaza’s agricultural land.
Who does this project help?
The farmers and their families are the direct beneficiaries of this project, with the income producing marketing plan increasing their salaries thus enabling them to provide for their loved ones. The indirect beneficiaries are the local communities who will benefit from the boost in economy that this will bring.
How does this project help in the long run?
This project focuses on facilitating the sale of honey on the local market, guaranteeing an income for the famers supported by this association. This is of vital importance, not only to the famers themselves, but also to the local economy giving it the boost it so desperately needs. By increasing the production and sale of Gaza-made products, we can contribute towards the long-term and sustainable solution of enhanced self-sufficiency for the Strip.