Sarajevo, May 27, 2016/Independent Balkan News Agency
By Mladen Dragojlovic
BiH beekeepers have bigger chance to export their products in EU countries since the Centre for Selective Breeding and Reproduction of Honeybee Queens and the Laboratory for quality control of the honey have started their operation in the city of Bihac.
These institutions are established within the EU funded project of Cross Border Cooperation Croatia-BiH ”BEE Promoted”. As it was announced from EU Delegation in BiH, the project contributed to the improvement of the institutional support services for beekeeping entrepreneurs and SMEs, and aimed at increasing the quality of their production and placement of honey and other bee products by raising their capacities, optimising queen breeding conditions and strengthening their cooperation.
Head of Operations Section for Social Development, Civil Society and Cross border Cooperation in the EU Delegation to BiH, Massimo Mina, noted the importance of honey as one of the products that BiH has successfully exported to the European Union.
“Three years ago, the European Commission adopted the Decision approving the BiH Residue Monitoring Plan for honey, poultry, eggs and milk, as a result enabling BiH to start exporting honey to the EU. We must continue to spread the word about the benefits of keeping markets open and encouraging greater flows of cross-border trade and investment and contribute to alternative approaches that can spur development and growth, foster economic opportunities, and create jobs”, Mina said.
He also emphasised the importance of honey bees for the environment, saying that projects like this help the preservation of the honey bee population which are endangered species worldwide, but they have an enormous impact on survival of the human kind.
Director of the Veterinary Institute Bihac, Zlatko Jusufhodzic, emphasised the institutional dimension of the project.
“Thanks to this project we will finally have in place the regulations in Federation of BiH for Centres for selective breeding and reproduction of Carniolan honeybee queens that will help us improve the honey production. Moreover, we will develop a study on the impact of honey bees on the environment and vice versa, for the first time in the country”, said Jusufhodzic.
The total value of the project is 649.509,62 euros and it is financed by the EU within the IPA Cross-Border Programme Croatia-Bosnia and Herzegovina 2007-2013. The lead partner in BiH is the Veterinary Institute Bihać, while the Faculty of Food Technology and Biotechnology, Centre for Food Technology and Biotechnology Zadar is the lead partner in Croatia. Partners on the project are Development Agency of the Una-Sana Canton, Zadar County, Zadar County Development Agency ZADRA-NOVA, and Association of beekeepers “Dalmatinka” and “Iva”.