Our Very Own Bee Farmer
Apiculture, or beekeeping, is one of the more ancient forms of animal husbandry, dating back as far as 2000 BCE. With the support of Harambe, Adesope Samuel keeps the tradition alive. Samuel is a beekeeper in his native Oyo, State. His voice quivers with excitement as he vocalized his plans for his rising business. The first six to eight months will consist of business set-up, the approximate length of time it takes for bees to produce enough honey to harvest. According to Samuel’s market research, honey goes for about 1,500 to 2,000 naira (about 9 to 13 dollars) per liter, and he plans on starting off with 10 liters from each hive, making about 100 liters.
Honey produces two by-products, beeswax and royal jelly, which he also intends to sell as well. Royal jelly possesses medicinal properties, boosts immunity, and used as a topical product as well as a dietary supplement. Beeswax is used for candle making, cosmetics, and drugs.
Mr. Samuel is future-focused when it comes to planning his business. To support the financial endeavors of the bee hive, the apiary will be surrounded with a cashew plantation, covering two acres of land. The hive itself will be one acre of land. Honey produces two by-products, beeswax and royal jelly, which he also intends to sell as well. Royal jelly possesses medicinal properties. It boosts immunity, is used as a topical product as well as a dietary supplement. Beeswax is used for candle making, cosmetics, and drugs.
In the third and fourth years of his business, his ventures will see him into the exportation and importation of cashew nuts to his target audiences–bakeries, alternative medicinal providers and pharmacies. According to Mr. Samuel, bakeries have been substituting sugar for honey instead. He also plans on selling honey to alternative medical providers and pharmacies. But for the first two years, his demand will be limited by the quantity of the honey that the bees will be able to produce which is not expected to exceed 200,000 liters. After that, he feels he can expand into into areas such as Lagos State and Abuja State, and work on the finer details of production such as packaging. And he does not expect to be doing it alone. “During the course, I plan on training more people, so that even if I am no longer doing the business, the business will still continue.” The diversity of his business venture provides greater financial stability.
Before encountering Harambe Nigeria, Mr. Samuel was attempting to envision his dreams, but could not quite get things off the ground by himself. “I had been thinking about the idea. During the process [that Harambe Nigeria took me through] I realized there is a difference between having an idea and putting the idea on paper. Without knowing the details you can. Marketing research, the process showed me that I had to know more. Having an idea is different from implement it.”
“There are many people who do it, but they will not set it up themselves, or they are doing it as part time work. Currently, this thing I have just started, has helped me to see how may business can grow. It has helped me to see about other opportunities, from a small business to without Harambe I would have been able to (The cash award has helped me to research , and starting operation). Before, I was looking at the money to get the land. It has empowered me, enabled me to work extra. Through Harambe, I have been able to network. From what they told me, they go extra mile to get pure honey. It makes me to meet more people, and the exposure is fantastic.”
Stay tuned for our next feature where we will provide an update on Adesope’s progress.