Reported by Sandeep Pattnaik
Bhubaneswar, Jan 16:
Khadi and Village industries Board (KVIB) aims to create more entrepreneurs in the honey production sector by facilitating large scale development in bee-keeping in Odisha, an official of the board revealed to OST on Thursday.
The board has so far created about 200 entrepreneurs since it started its operations in bee keeping from its date of inception in 1956, the official said. Initially, there were 24 small and medium entrepreneurs in both Individual and SHG category. The numbers have witnessed around nine-fold jump over the years, the offcialtold OST.
Also, it is generating interest amongst lady entrepreneurs by way of supplying ISI bee-boxes to them with 50% subsidy to make them self sufficient. The subsidy is being reimbursed both by the state government and Khadi and Village Industries Commission (KVIC) under the Central Government.
Productivity relating to the honey production can be augmented by focusing on improved bee keeping methods through use of quality bee boxes, for which an entrepreneur has to invest a meagre Rs. 20,000, according to the official.
The Board, which had become a member of National Bee Board (NBB) under the Ministry of Agriculture, Government of India on July 10 last year, has widely focused on the bee-farming in Odisha besides conducting awareness programs on a large scale.
The NBB has granted Rs 3 lakhs for holding seminar on bee keeping in Bhubaneswar. Besides, the board has provided Rs. 9.76 lacs for holding 20 bee keeping training camps in 12 Naxal affected districts of the state, the official of the KVIB said to OST.
Assistance up to Rs 35 lakhs is provided by the board for micro, small and medium (MSM) entrepreneurs aspiring to set up their unit under various central and state schemes including those interested in the honey production/bee-farming.
In a bid to provide marketing support to the entrepreneurs to sell their products, KVIB has decided to open sales outlets at district level. Government of Odisha has agreed to allot sales outlets in the government market complex in each district headquarters, the official informed.
The Board has also decided to establish a modernized honey plant in place of its old honey processing unit which can be able to produce more honey while creating more employment opportunities in the state.
The Board has a departmental honey processing unit running in its premises for over last 30 years. The KVIC provided loan to the tune of Rs. 30,162 and Rs.43,012 by way of grant to the board. Plans are afoot to establish a modernized honey plant with production capacity of 300 kgs per day.
Raw honey is collected from bee-Keepers all through the State and processed manually in the honey processing unit for sales.