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Beekeeping Photos from Ixcán, Guatemala

In Ixcán, Guatemala, people have few livelihood options beyond growing maize. In order to create new economic opportunities, EcoLogic provides technical training in beekeeping to local community residents. See our work for yourself:

At EcoLogic's beekeeping trainings, community members learn how construct and monitor hives hives

At EcoLogic’s beekeeping trainings, community members learn how construct and monitor hives hives

Local farmers help to transport necessary materials to the hive construction sites

Local farmers help to transport necessary materials to the hive construction sites

Finished hives - many farmers host multiple hives to aid pollination and increase honey output

Finished hives – many farmers host multiple hives to aid pollination and increase honey output

Farmers use smoke to calm the bees before opening the hives

Farmers use smoke to calm the bees before opening the hives

Each hive contains several removable frames

Each hive contains several removable frames

A close-up of a frame taken out of a hive. The bees in this hive are using this frame as a nursery - the honey is stored elsewhere.

A close-up of a frame taken out of a hive. The bees in this hive are using this frame as a nursery – the honey is stored elsewhere.

This frame hold honey, which has been securely capped with wax for storage by the bees.

This frame holds honey, which the the bees have securely capped with wax for storage.

To access the honey in the frame, the wax caps must be removed by carefully slicing along both sides of the honeycomb structure.

To access the honey in the frame, the wax caps must be removed by carefully slicing along both sides of the honeycomb structure.

Once the honey and wax have been separated, the honey into containers for storage and transportation.

Once the honey and wax have been separated, the honey into containers for storage and transportation.

The finished product!

The finished product!

Beekeeping is a forest-friendly alternative to other kinds of food production. Unlike other products, honey can be harvested year-round, creating income stability for families. Beekeeping training also gives farmers the opportunity to diversify their harvest so they can be less reliant on a single source of income for financial and food security. This is especially important as climate conditions change and some crops are less reliable than they have been historically.

There are now more than 800 hives across communities in the Ixcán region. So far this year, the beekeepers have collected over 21,000 pounds of honey, and generated over $125,000 in income. EcoLogic is also working on connecting beekeepers to honey retailers so they can sell their product within a broader market.

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