Yemenis take pride in honey production

Published: Updated:
Read Mode
100% Font Size
3 min read

Yemenis are proud of the sweet nectar that the bees produce, and Sidr honey is one of the most expensive types of local honey on the market, with some shops selling 1-kilogramme jars of the honey for up to 160 dollars, and more than 180 dollars for one kilogramme of the honeycomb.

It isn't only locals who say they have the best honey in the world.

“Yemen honey is world-wide famous and it's known of the best in the world, so if I'm in Yemen I have to buy Yemen honey,'' said one female tourist from France.

Government figures suggest the country's honey production is on the rise. Output is estimated at 5,000 tons a year during the past three years, with an annual revenue of 13 billion Yemeni Riyals, more than $16 million U.S.

Despite the high sales, people are concerned that the pure honey could be mixed with other varieties, ruining its quality.

“There's external adulterating where they mix Pakistani honey, or Kashmir honey with Yemeni honey, and this is deceiving people as well as a lot of shops,” said shop seller Faris Al-Wali.

Some also say the prices are manipulated and are being sold for more then their true value.

But honey traders are quick to point out that adulterating Yemeni honey is difficult due to the specific characterizes related to its colour and smell.

“Yemeni honey, its reputation and quality has increased, so it's evident that its exports have increased, its importance has increased, the market is thirsty for Yemeni honey. The price of it has also increased, so all of these things give an advantage to Yemeni honey, because Yemeni honey is of a great quality, not only in the Arab world, but in the whole world,” said honey seller Abdalla Abdalla.

Yemen's Ministry of Agriculture says most of the exports are to the Gulf where around 500 tons of Yemeni honey are exported each year.

Osman Jalal is a beekeeper in Sana’a, he says it's one of the country's most important commodities.

“Yemeni honey is one of the best kinds in the world, and that’s because it’s made naturally, there is no interference from modern technology with regards to adding materials to the cells or multiple vitamins or pesticides or to the structural change of the bees,” he said.

Local media reports also suggest beekeeping and honey production is a source of income in the impoverished country, with banks and the United Nations Development Fund launching program to support the country's local beekeepers.

Top Content Trending