The Abu Dhabi Agriculture and Food Safety Authority (ADAFSA) has organized, on Monday, the Second Beekeepers Meeting at its headquarters in Al Ain. The meeting was attended by a large number of beekeepers and honey producers from the Emirate of Abu Dhabi. In addition to reviewing what has been achieved to find Emirati honey bee species tolerant to the country's weather, the meeting addressed challenges facing beekeepers in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi.
In the presence of the team supervising the implementation of ADAFSA's honey bee species development project, the meeting announced a contest for beekeepers to be held as part of ApiArab Expo, the dedicated event for honey production which will take place on the sidelines of the Global Forum for Innovations in Agriculture 2020. ADAFSA is keen to encourage the Emirati beekeepers to participate in the contest to demonstrate the development witnessed by this industry.
The meeting translates ADAFSA's efforts to realize sustainable agricultural sector and support beekeeping and honey production in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi in general. It also allows beekeepers to share expertise, discuss all issues relevant to beekeeping and honey production, and take part in plans to develop this sector in support of food security.
During the meeting, Mr. Saeed Al Yamahi, Acting Director of Research and Development Division, highlighted ADAFSA's efforts to develop honey bee species that can adapt to the local environment.
"Since 2015, ADAFSA has intensified efforts to develop Emirati bee strains to produce high-quality local honey, such as Sidr, Ghaf, Samar honey, as an alternative to the annual import of honey from abroad," said Al Yamahi.
"In addition to the great nutritional value of honey as important food item for daily consumption, the meeting aimed at highlighting the environmental importance of beekeeping as bees pollinate flowering plants and thereby maintain the ecosystem," he added.
Mr. Al Yamahi stressed ADAFSA's keenness to provide all forms of support to beekeepers and conduct the necessary studies and research to develop beekeeping practices, to enhance the efficiency of this vital industry.
The meeting also addressed challenges facing beekeepers in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi. Participants called on ADAFSA to end the cultivation of 'damas' trees, used as windbreaks around farms, for its negative impact on the taste and quality of Sidr honey.