This year, Serbian beekeepers have earned more money for their honey than beekeepers in any other country – 7.1 euros per kilogramme, the highest purchase price in the world and in Serbia.
Zoran Krstić from Vlasotinci has been beekeeping for 20 years and now, he says, he is satisfied with the purchase price of honey for the first time. “The wholesale price was EUR 2.2 per kilogram in 2009. It has increased every year since then, but not enough. Now since last year, we are up to 7.1 euros per kilogramne. I am extremely satisfied,” says Krstić.
Serbian beekeepers have achieved this record price by selling honey on the domestic and foreign markets without intermediaries. Beekeepers who have been doing this job for 30 or 40 years say that it would be difficult to survive now if it were not for the good prices. “A bee farm of a hundred hives needs a minimum investment of 2,000 euros if we calculate sugar, pest medication, fuel and depreciation,” says Radiša Stamenković, a beekeeper from Kovanluk near Merošina.
Bojan Antić, president of the Padina Beekeepers’ Association in Merošina, said they have problems with quantity, mainly due to climate change.
The fact that the producers get a bigger slice of the pie than before does not affect the retail price, which is formed by the fluctuations on the global market. “Most beekeepers and traders charge over 1,200 dinars per kilo. Prices are expected to rise soon, as stocks are already running low,’ says Miloš Zdravković, a beekeeper from Niš.
The Association brings together close to 8,000 beekeepers who, depending on the year, produce between 4,000 and 10,000 tonnes of honey, of which up to 3,000 tonnes are exported.
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