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STINGLESS BEE HONEY TRIGONA

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Sweet success for stingless bees’ keeper

New Sabah Times

8th September, 2017
By MOHD IZHAM B. HASHIM

KOTA KINABALU: For avid Telipok beekeeper, the bold decision to farm Trigona stingless honeybees was the best decision he ever made.

First introduced to its sweet potential two years ago, 51-year old Anik Jinuis now runs a thriving business with his family and has never looked back.

“It’s been an amazing journey; I can say that we’ve tasted sweet success having first learnt of the lucrative prospects of stingless honeybees from MARDI back in 2015 and I can’t thank them enough,” beamed Anik.

Anik, who manages family-run company, Nikmah Trigona Farm has over 1,800 beehives at their farm in Telipok producing not less than 80 kg of honey which generates monthly net income of RM5,000 gross profits at RM12,000, mostly from domestic sales.

The insect responsible for their sweet success is none other than the Trigona stingless honeybee or locally known as “Kelulut” whose honey is renowned for its nutritious properties, containing up to 10 times more antioxidants than regular honey. For this, honey from stingless bees are premium products which commands high prices with huge potential for local and export markets due to its properties as a superfood.

“At local retail markets, the prices for kelulut honey are RM200 –RM400 per kg but for now, we only cater for the Sabah market and sometimes to Sarawak,” said Anik when met by reporters yesterday after the launching of the Sabah Farmers, Breeders and Fishermen Convention.

Apart from the honey, Anik said the company also sells downstream products such as various soap, facial cleansers, assorted perfumes and beauty products, all naturally produced from propolis and bee bread which are by-products from the hives. The beehives are also source of propolis and bee bread, which have uses in the health and cosmetics industries.

“We are deeply thankful for the government who guided us to get our business off the ground, especially the Malaysian Agriculture Research and Development Institute (MARDI),” he said.

Additionally, he said government support for the company has uplifted their standard of life through Kelulut farming compared to the past when he previously raises poultry and catches freshwater fish as a source of income for his family.

Life has changed for Anik and his family who puts at least four hours every day to manage the beehives, and spend the rest of their time producing honey, carrying out deliveries and sales for their customers.

Finding the market to sell their produce has been a breeze and their company receives invitations from government agencies such as FAMA and the Department of Industrial Development and Research (DIDR) to sell their produce at sales booths. Anik pointed out that his success with stingless honeybee farming proves that agriculture can be a profitable and lucrative business through the right channels.

“Those who say that agriculture is a poor man’s job can’t be more wrong, and we only hear such wrongful misconceptions from those who failed in their ventures,” he said.

The future for the business looks bright as it is in good hands with Anik’s daughter, Alferra Rozanikmah J. Jinuis, who is only 21-years-old but represents the next generation of agropreneurs of her family’s blossoming stingless honeybee business.

Undeterred with the common negative views on agriculture, Alferra said her decision to pursue agriculture was due to her interest and support from her parents.

“For me, it’s more satisfying to see the profits of our own endeavours and efforts rather than earning salaries within the cosy comforts of an air conditioned office,” she said.

Alferra, who handles the marketing work of the company, unveiled that she also started her own company to expand her family’s business into tourism by opening Trigona stingless honeybee-themed retreat at their family farm – similar to the Leisure Farm concept that is popular in Taiwan.

 

Contact person : Anik Jinuis

Address : P/S 27, Pos Mini Telipok, Bukit Payung, 88450 Telipok

Contact No. : 019-8530301 / 013-878 0709

Email :

 

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