August 3, 2021 | finance & economy

Honey production buzzing in Kurdistan’s mountains


SORAN, Kurdistan Region — Beehives in the mountains are bursting with honey, indicating it will be a bumper crop this year for some of Kurdistan Region’s beekeepers, rebounding from a bad year in 2020. But out of the mountains, in hotter, dryer areas, this year’s drought-like conditions are damaging hives.

Beekeepers in the mountains said the mild winter with less snow has been good for their bees. “Drought has been beneficial in the mountains this year. Compared to last year, the produce has tripled. It has tripled since last year,” said Jabar Nawandayi, a beekeeper on Mount Halgurd.

Wildflowers were able to thrive this year in the mountains, but there were not enough buds elsewhere, because of the lack of rainfall.

“We had a little rain in spring. There was not enough flower growth to meet the needs of bees. The weather wasn't stable. Some days were cold and other days were hot,” said beekeeper Mohammed Qadir in Halabja.

Kurdish honey has won international awards, but production varies widely annually because of the weather. Last year, hives in the Kurdistan Region produced about 100 tons. This year, production is estimated to reach 700 tons, according to the Beekeepers Network Association of Kurdistan.

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