SUVA, July 4 (Xinhua) -- Fiji's Ministry of Agriculture is conducting a five-day training on apiculture for agriculture officers in Tailevu, Fiji.
To date, Fiji has 1,000 farmers involved in the apiculture industry with over 10,000 bee hives producing more than 200 tons of honey annually.
Training includes all aspects of bee farming, and participants will later train farmers involved in the apiculture industry.
While opening the training on Tuesday, Tomasi Tunabuna from the Animal Health and Production Division said capacity building was one of the priorities.
Tunabuna urged participants to make good use of such trainings.
He said the apiculture industry had huge potential in Fiji and the interest among the people was continuously increasing.
Tunabuna said according to the recently announced budget for 2018 there would be an increased funding for the apiculture industry where more farmers would be assisted.
"There are also plans to rehabilitate those farmers who had lost their bee hives during Tropical Cyclone (TC) Winston so that production can soon normalize."
Majority of farms in Fiji's Western Division and the maritime zone were largely affected during TC Winston causing a major reduction in the overall production.
"There have been a lot of development programs planned for the next few years such as artificial insemination of queen bees, making of new boxes and training more farmers," he said.
Meanwhile, Dobuilevu Research Station in Rakiraki and Batiri Research Station in Vanua Levu will now be fully responsible for the apiculture research activities.
Agriculture livestock officers were also expected to be sent for overseas training targeting the export market with higher emphasis on small holder farmers.
Tunabuna added this was done in efforts to increase honey production in Fiji and reduce the imports of honey.