The pro-active government strategies to encourage and promote beekeeping in the Sultanate of Oman came in for acclamation by a UN body.
On the occasion of the celebration of World Bee Day on May 20, the office of Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations said that the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Water Resources has made innovative partnerships with the private sector in the field of beekeeping.
“This has led to the development of a system, implement programmes and initiatives to raise beekeeping standards as well as improve its quality and other value-added products," the UN body said.
The International Day designated by the United Nations came to raise awareness of the importance of bees and pollinators and highlight their contribution to sustainable development and the threats they face.
The day was celebrated under the slogan “We are committed to protecting bees: Celebrating the diversity of bees and their breeding systems”.
The ministry said that it pays special attention to the development of beekeeping through the implementation of many research, extension and development programmes and projects in all the wilayats.
“The ultimate goal of establishing this day is to strengthen measures to protect bees and other pollinators, which will greatly contribute to solving problems related to the global food supply and eradicating hunger in developing countries," the ministry said in a statement.
Besides being wild pollinators, bees play a key role in maintaining biodiversity, promoting sustainability and adapting to climate change.
About 75 per cent of the crops that produce fruit and seeds for human consumption in the world partially depend on pollinators for sustainable production.
The UN office pointed out that beekeeping contributes to achieving many of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and everyone has a role to play in rebuilding better for bees, rethinking how we relate to nature, and to enhance pollinators to encourage biodiversity and support food systems.
The profession of beekeeping is an important part of rural life around the world rather than just a hobby. On a small scale, they contribute significantly to strengthening rural communities and securing livelihoods.
Oman enjoys a long and storied tradition of beekeeping which dates back to the 17th century. Honey has traditionally been used by Omani families as a home remedy due to its nutritional value and potential health properties.
The country’s agro-climatic conditions make it very suitable for beekeeping. As a result, the practice has been passed down for generations and continues to play an important role in maintaining Oman’s biodiversity and ecosystems.