ARUA - Traders in Arua district have set up a mini-honey processing plant in order to improve on the quality of honey produced in the district.
Arua Market Honey Traders Association injected sh25m to construct the honey plant.
The total cost of the plant and the honey processor totaled to sh800m with support from Uganda national apiculture development organisation.
The chairperson, (AMHTA), Alice Onzia said the district is known for honey production however the quality is a challenge.
“We have a lot of honey in Arua but we are looking for quality and that is why we decided that instead of selling honey on the streets we needed to add value,” She said
“We have come a long way from saving sh500 after the sale of one jerrycan of honey to reach this milestone,” Onzia added
To keep the business moving, Onzia added they have over 300 farmers in the district that supply them with honey.
Since they started operating the honey processing plant, Onzia says they sell over 100 jerrycans of honey each at sh300,000 which is sustaining.
Patrick Aritole, an Entomology and trainer said despite the group lacking in certification the quality of honey was good.
He said with youth unemployment, the group objective is helping to wipe out joblessness youth in the area.
He said apart from honey processing, the group has also benefited from training of creating solar bee wax melters from locally made materials.
He said farmers previously used to get sh. 3000 for a kilogram of honey, however, after the establishment of a honey processor a kilo now costs sh.6000.
Leah Ayikoru, a member of the association said the honey business helped her to pay school fees for her daughter.
“The processing plant will add more value to our honey which will earn us more money after sales”, She said.
The LC1 Chairperson Prison Cell, Arua municipality Godfrey Andama said the establishment of the plant is employing youth in the area.