Beekeepers and honey producing companies in Oman have welcomed the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries’ decision to ban the export of Omani queen bees.
“To ban the export of our queen bees is very good because they are less in number and we want to increase their population. Through this decision we can increase the population easily,” Mohammed Tariq Al Shanfari, chairman of the National Natural Co. LLC told the Times of Oman on the sidelines of the Honey Fest being held at the Grand Mall.
National Natural Co LLC is the only company in Oman, which produces honey and sells all the equipment that a beekeeper wants, according to Al Shanfari.
“The ministry’s decision will boost the Omani honey market because the honey, which we produce in Oman is the best in the GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council),” Ali Al Kindi, a beekeeper said.
“In Oman, we produce pure honey and we won’t add any preservatives, which makes our honey different from other producers,” he added.
“The Sultanate is considered as the perfect environment to keep bees as its geography is a great helper in forming suitable places for bees to create hives and produce honey,” Al Shanfari said.
According to the beekeepers, three types of honey are produced in Oman, which are known as Al Sumor, Al Sedar and Flower.
Al Sumor is considered the best quality honey produced in Oman, which has a dark black colour and may cost OMR50 for a medium bottle.
“Omani honey is characterised by its density, which contains a good percentage of vitamins and proteins,” Al Shanfari asserted.
Oman has three seasons to produce honey, according to Al Kindi.
“Al Sumor honey is produced during the month of May and the production of Al Sedar honey begins from the end of October and ends during the first week of December. Flower honey is produced during the month of March,” he explained.
The beekeepers, who are participating in the sixth Omani Honey Market, have said the exhibition is a good opportunity for them to educate the public about honey varieties.
The exhibition is a good opportunity to exchange knowledge, Al Kindi noted.
“This exhibition is a gateway for us to market honey. It also gives us the chance to get to know other apiarists,” he added.
Speaking about his interactions with the visitors at the market, Al Kindi stated, “It is good to know that people are interested in knowing about the types, the quality and seasons; if I get more customers, I can produce more and sell more. I can develop my product even more.”
“It’s the first time I have learnt so much about honey and the varieties of honey Oman produces,” a visitor said.
The 6th Omani Honey Market was inaugurated by Dr. Fu’ad bin Ja’afar Al Sajwani, Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries on Wednesday.
By Mobin Mathew Blesson
© Muscat Media Group