Beekeeping in Yemen A Dangerous Profession Amid Warning of War Bells

Beekeeping in Yemen: A Dangerous Profession Amid Warning of War Bells

Yemen, known for creating the best honey in the world, has been deserted by over four years of common conflict that has broken the economy and pushed the Arab country really close to starvation. Before the war, large quantities of extremely popular & rich Sidr honey made from the Jujube tree was produced by the farmers in this impoverished Arab state. 

But in recent times, the ongoing war times have pushed Yemen to the verge of famine and shattered the economy creating a bad place for the people to live and survive. The Conflict has scourged a huge number of lives and carried the economy really close to falling. Cottage industries like beekeeping, coffee growing, and more like them have been hit especially hard. 

Beekeepers say conflicts between the Saudi-upheld government and Iran-backed rebels, close to the worst humanitarian crisis, have choked their livelihoods. The conditions are extremely terrible and bad at present. Sometimes the beekeepers who shift their private farms to a safer place sometimes get hit by mistake in the airstrikes. Before the war, Yemen was known to export 50,000 tonnes of honey per year, but exports have since fallen by more than 50% in recent years. 

This is primarily because of a Saudi-driven coalition that mediated in 2015 to reestablish the globally perceived government and has directed a huge number of air strikes in its fight against the Iranian-aligned Houthi movement which controls the most crowded spaces of Yemen, including Sanaa. 

Some air strikes have hit regular citizen targets, albeit the coalition denies doing such purposefully. Apart from this, Houthi fighters have also positioned landmines in their domain under their control. The scenario has made breeders mindful that when they are looking for a safer location and trying to move into it, they could be targeted or bombed although by mistake. 

Along with risking the life of beekeepers, this conflict has dropped the production of one of the most beneficial honey varieties in the world. The business of Sidr Honey which is well known for its restorative properties and is a success in the souks and markets of the Gulf where it retails along with some built-in costs has suffered badly. 

As the beekeeper’s work depends mainly on the seasons, they have to move from place to place to set up a hive and produce honey. But during wartime, the main issue confronted by them was going to discover new blossoms in sprout for their honey bees to gather the nectar. Beekeepers who are into the business of harvesting this characteristic natural ingredient are facing great difficulties of exporting during wartime and the calculated troubles of keeping honey bees. 

It has also become costlier to trade Yemeni honey because of tough estimates forced on sea streams by the Saudi-backed coalition, which blames the Houthis for carrying Iranian-made weapons, a charge denied by the group and Tehran. There is just a single outlet – to Saudi Arabia, so all exports should move from there, thereby increasing the export charges and has made the item arrive at the purchaser at an exceptionally exorbitant cost. 

The beneficial Sidr honey must be reaped once like clockwork, however lower-grade acacia and desert blossoms give work all year. An age prior, bee colonies were as yet developed in void tree trunks and moved on the backs of camels; presently, imported machine-made hives and pickup trucks have made the work simpler, regardless of whether beekeepers, as so many others in Yemen, are tormented by fuel deficiencies. 

While there is cash to be made in the honey business in Yemen, there are additionally many difficulties for beekeepers to survive. In the event that roadblocks or battling make it difficult to move hives to more abundant regions, the honey bees will die, and the insects are additionally in danger from unregulated pesticide use by farmers. Let’s all pray for the conditions to get normal in the coming days and beekeepers can produce more Yemeni honey.

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