Conservation of water towers through beekeeping has been stepped up after the Kenya Water Towers Agency flags off a consignment of 670 beehives and several honey processing equipment. The receiving self-help groups are North Mbooni Liquid Gold Bee Farmers, Tulimani Block Beekeepers and Kooi Beehive Keepers in Makueni County. Others are Tumaini Initiative Women and Achey Goats in West Pokot County as well as Nyambene Community Forest Association in Meru County. The groups will also be trained on beekeeping best practices. This will enable them produce, package and sell their own branded honey locally and internationally.
“Our aim is to empower communities living around our water towers such that they get an alternative livelihood while conserving the water towers”, Ag. Director General Prof. Julius Tanui spoke as he flags off the consignment at The Hives Limited Offices along Mombasa Road, Nairobi. If communities living around water catchment areas practice bee keeping, they will earn a living and the forests will remain intact. Some of the activities that are detrimental to the health of the water towers include charcoal production, illegal logging, overgrazing and farming in forests.
In the last one year, the Agency has distributed over 1,200 beehives to various groups that include Nzeveni Beekeeping in Makueni County, Nessuit Beekeepers in Nakuru County and Samburu Beekeepers in Samburu County. The Samburu group was further added a refinery that has seen the group harvest and refine their honey at Maralal town. This demonstrates the resolve that the Agency has in ensuring that water towers across the country are well conserved so that water keep flowing in our rivers for domestic, animal and commercial use.