Updated Mar 29, 2019

Pollination with stingless Amazon bees

https://peabiru.org.br/nectardaamazonia/

Mariana Buoro

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The project helps rural communities in the Amazon to raise non-stinging bees to protect biodiversity and provide food security and family income

Peabiru’s work began with the formation of meliponary matrices, from which the bee boxes could multiply, until each family or group had a minimum set of boxes with significant honey production capacity. The implementation was accompanied by technical capacitation of local residents, revealing a social technology for collective work learning, with positive impacts in gender issues, food security...
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Peabiru’s work began with the formation of meliponary matrices, from which the bee boxes could multiply, until each family or group had a minimum set of boxes with significant honey production capacity. The implementation was accompanied by technical capacitation of local residents, revealing a social technology for collective work learning, with positive impacts in gender issues, food security, environmental restoration, agroforestry production, environmental education and income growth. Meliponini bees native to the Amazon are perfectly adapted and suited to the region, they have been raised successfully by traditional communities for generations, they are docile and harmless, the hive has an indefinite duration if well protected and its maintenance is quite simple.
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Stage 4: Transition to Scale

After 12 years providing technical expertise, strengthening producers' capacities and managing legislation processes, we can now expand production to new areas and target the commercialization of the honey, guaranteeing the projects' sustainability.
Registered in Brazilin Brazil

Focus Areas:

Agriculture, Environment and Social Development

Agriculture, Environment and Social DevelopmentSEE LESS

Implemented In:

Brazil

BrazilSEE LESS

101
Lives Impacted to Date
1
Key Partner
1
Country Implemented In
102
Customers
7
Employees
$776,770
Funds Raised to Date

Problem

Due to the destruction of natural environments, extensive monoculture areas and excessive use of agrochemicals, the number of pollinators – essential to agricultural production and environmental conservation – is declining. Interest in meliponiculture is increasing for its environmental services and potential income generation by underserved families in the rural Amazon

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Solution

Meliponiculture is a social technology in development with positive environmental externalities which contributes to food security and income generation. It has low implementation costs and simplified management, empowers less favored groups, potential for replicability, environmental services and market inclusion. It has also become a strategy for the empowerment of specific groups in the field, especially women, as it fits with the numer of tasks traditionally attributed to her.

Target Beneficiaries

We work in 7 cities (Macapá, Oiapoque, Almeirim, Curuçá, Monte Alegre, Curralinho, Barcarena) in the Amazon, all with indicators of low socioeconomic development and high dependence on government subsidies. We work mainly with agroextractivist communities, quilombolas and indigenous groups, favoring the participation of women and youth. Additional income generated by honey represents between R$ 100 and R $300 a month per capita, significant values for low income populations

Mission and Vision

meliponiculture has proven to be more than social technology. It is a potential support tool for territorial management and local development, especially in rural communities in the Amazon, for as a socio-productive activity that values socio-biodiversity it contributes to social and territorial organization, stimulates social capital and fosters positive transformation. We see it as a complementary rural activity, aligning income generation, food security and environmental conservation.

Competitive Advantage

Our method designs and improves infrastructure with simple, cheap and easily accessible materials, unlike with Apis beekeeping, making the average cost of building a beehive in meliponiculture five times lower. Added to the low cost, there’s little effort made in the handling: one to two hours of weekly work. As the bees do not sting, the meliponary can be close to the house, dispensing large areas and allowing for families to engage. The replicability of the activity is potentialized since the technological package of meliponicultura allows fast learning of management and the construction and assembly of the hives. The honey from stingless bees is a differentiated product with good market potential, with increasing demand and value. There are offers from R$ 60 to R$ 150 per kilo, ensuring that the value that remains with the producer, especially if it is from a small isolated community, can be quite significant for local income.

Planned Goals and Milestones

The current challenge is to consolidate meliponiculture production chain in a sustainable way in socio-environmental aspects, while ensuring its economic viability. 3600 bee boxes are now installed and more 1,000 should be producing in 2019, and 10,000 should be reached by 2022. Today there are 200 beneficiaries of traditional peoples and communities from different locations. We expect to increase in 50 more beneficiaries per year – primarily prioritizing the neighbors of the current producers.

The Team Behind the Innovation

The strength of the team is in its experience in singless bees honey value chain, technical expertise, and deep knowledge of stakeholders (local communities, governmental bodies, research institutions, logistics). The executive team has decades of experience managing projects in the third sector in the Amazon, and the field technitians are local residents (including from indigenous and traditional communities) trained by the project, allowing for local appropriation of the knowledge.

Milestone

Mar 2019
Recognition ReceivedPENDING
Feb 2019
New Product Or Service
Acting since 2006 in the melipon value chain, on this date Instituto Peabiru has received the first batch of honey produced by stingless bees that is entirely certified with a federal inspection seal (SIF) and management authorization by IBAMA (Brazilian Institute of the Environment). Peabiru and its partners have long advocated for adequate legislation to properly legalize an otherwise informal value chain.
Feb 2019
In The News
 
as part of
 honey from Amazon stingless bees
Jun 2017
Lives Impacted
101
Jan 2006
Created
Date Unknown
New Country Implemented In
Brazil

Supporting Materials

peabiru-english-version-the-amazon-pollination.pdf