Victor Mvuso hated his first day at work. Nerves? Nope. Mvuso’s colleagues were the problem – bees. His welcome to the workplace saw him engulfed by a swarm. Angry and irritated, he could have walked away. But he needed to work. So he persevered. Soon the mysteries of the hive became known to him and the African Honey Bee changed his life.
Mvuso learnt that bees play a crucial role in South African farming at the African Honey Bee initiative, a project founded by Guy Stubbs back in 2012. After falling in love with the species as a young man, Stubbs wanted to educate people about their value. Bees pollinate over 50 plant species in South Africa. Their honey can be a valuable source of income. In fact, our local produce is of a far higher quality than the imported product that dominates the market.
African Honey Bee’s message is that bees should be viewed as industrious contributors within society, rather than pests to be removed. For Mvuso, who has grown into a beekeeping instructor, it’s encouraging to see his community learning and drawing income from selling honey. “The more I know the bees the more I respect them,” says Mvuso. He takes fewer stings nowadays.
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