Chennai, January 21, 2012: The Kerala Agricultural University (KAU) is now implementing a project approved by the Indian Council of Agricultural Research to promote and develop meliponiculture in the State as a valuable source of income to farmers. The University scientists developed appropriate technologies for honey production by rearing stingless bees (see news dated February 5, 2011 in this site).
A. Satish reports in Express Buzz dated January 17, 2012 that a number of self help groups have come forward to promote meliponiculture. Under their sponsorship farmers in the Palakkad district got training and started rearing stingless bees on a commercial basis in their homesteads. Under the project, the farmers are provided with simple hives and bees after receiving training in meliponiculture technology developed by the KAU. Farmers in the southern districts of Thiruvananthapuram, Kollam, Alappuzha, Pathanamthitta and Kannur districts have already taken up rearing stingless bees. Now the technology is being propagated in the Palakkad district.
Dr. Stephen Devanesan, scientist and project leader at the KAU says that the stingless bees are valuable pollinators of several small flowered crops, besides producing honey known to be highly medicinal.