By Jared Oundo
People keep bees for various reasons. One can keep bees as a hobby or for commercial purposes. Many bee keepers in the world inherited the venture from their fore fathers. This led to the traditional belief of the sacred bees. Oral tradition stories and biblical stories (Genesis 43: 11, Matthew 3:4 and Proverbs 24:13-14) confirm that honey was understood to be very special food, and it was available even during difficult times such as drought.
Honey has a very big market due to its many benefits. Honey is largely composed of sugars that contribute 95% or more of its dry weight. These are largely simple sugars, namely fructose and glucose, which comprise 85% or more of the sugars present. These sugars contribute to the physical and nutritional value of honey.
It is everybody’s concern to see that the rural communities generate sustainable incomes as soon as possible. Livestock production and marketing offers an option. Out of the various livestock enterprises, namely, poultry, fisheries, cattle, piggery, etc. beekeeping venture offers one of the best options for the rural communities and commercial farmers because of its minimal requirements for land, machinery and equipment, labor and capital investment.
With the evolution and discovery of the nutritional value of the bee products, many economies have now started commercializing bees. This has not been easy as many farmers have tied all forms of coming up with a bee hive that will give them maximum returns. The one dollar question is how do you sell more to maximize your returns!
In today’s fast-paced world marketing honey is going to pose a bit of a challenge since there are so many commercial level sellers doing this with the resources to promote and market the product.
Utilizing the internet is part of the sure marketing strategy for selling honey, since so many people can open up an online store to sell their products, but you also need an effective system in place to pack and ship items all over the globe. In case you’re selling honey online you need to be able to manage online orders or you can sub-contract a firm to pack and ship your items and take the conjecture out of your hands, so that you’re not stuck having to deal with lost or misdirected packages.
Honey marketing isn’t a skill placed on auto-pilot, you have to spend time working it day by day since a business doesn’t run itself it takes a good deal of persistence and effort to make it work and to make it where you want it to be. It’s easier for people who have previous experience in running a venture to be able to efficiently carry out a sure-fire way to market a single product such as honey and still be able to make a profit. It’s just that when you market products you have to know the actual demand for that particular product in question. For marketing starting at the bottom helps you to learn little things along the way that will make your venture fruitful, so that it will prosper in future when you know what it takes to make it work.
Honey is always a product that people will buy and is in demand due to its many benefits. Having your proper marketing plan detailed will allow you to adjust as you keep growing and discovering new markets for your honey.
You will need to have a first class user friendly website when selling honey and you want to grow your business. For sure this way you can reach a deeper market of customers than just the locals that you sell to at your roadside stand. This is the reason so many small enterprises are reaching out to bigger companies, but it’s helpful to give small enterprises the tools needed to increase their exposure for business and even clients with farmers and suppliers.
According to a research, consumers are willing to pay more for local compared to international honey. In a survey of more than 100 consumers, researchers found buyers are willing to pay 20% more for a jar of local honey compared to a jar of international honey. Local honey and honey products have a long list of selling points:
- Sugars in honey are very simple sugars like glucose and fructose – which some people find more easily digestible and athletes use for a quick energy boost.
- Unlike artificial sweeteners, honey contains additional nutritional compounds, like proteins and minerals. These minerals are derived from the flowering plants and concentrated somewhat in the honey.
- Honey is additive-free and has a heritage going back thousands of years.
- The quality of pure honey remains stable for many months on a kitchen shelf.
- Every purchase of local honey products benefits your local economy.
If you want it simple then you can just sell your honey to larger commercial operations and let them do all the leg work in marketing your honey. However, if you want total control you need to plan and identify potential markets for your honey. Think beyond your local stand and county fairs because you can make a decent income on your beekeeping business if you’re willing to put the time and resources to it.
Make sure you catch my next article on honey, its numerous benefits and its products….