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Beekeeping Academy of Slovenia celebrates first anniversary

Ljubljana, 17 April 2019 – In 2018, Slovenia established the Beekeeping Academy of Slovenia, which helps share knowledge of beekeeping internationally and with developing countries. Today’s conference on the anniversary marking the founding of the Academy was attended by Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Food Dr Aleksandra Pivec, and in addition to President of the Slovenian Beekeepers’ Association Boštjan Noč and Chair of the Academy Damjana Grobelšek was also attended by President of the National Assembly Dejan Židan and Minister of Foreign Affairs Miro Cerar.

The conference was intended to present the operations of the Beekeeping Academy of Slovenia, and also included practical applications in the form of education for the general beekeeping public. In her address, Minister Pivec noted that on 20 May, World Bee Day, Slovenia tries to make the global audience as aware as possible of the importance of bees and other pollinators to humanity, primarily by ensuring food security, preventing global hunger and preserving the environment and biodiversity. “Through international cooperation we can achieve better results in protecting bees and the development of beekeeping, and not least also sustainable development and the protection of the global environment.” At the ministry we are well aware of the importance of bees and beekeeping, which according to the minister is reflected in our provision of comprehensive support for Slovenian beekeeping. “We are successfully implementing three-year European programmes of measures in the area of beekeeping, and we support the operations of the public beekeeping consultancy service, we have an approved breeding programme for the Carniolan honey bee, we have adopted the Resolution on the Protection of the Carniolan Honey Bee, which is an upgrade to the breeding programme, and we have also established a public specialised veterinary service for protecting the health of bees.”

The minister also noted that in 2018 Slovenia established the Beekeeping Academy of Slovenia in order to share Slovenia’s wealth of more than two hundred years of beekeeping knowledge in the form of informal education. “By providing knowledge to developing countries we hope to make a contribution to the elimination of hunger and poverty.” At the initiative of BRAC, the world’s largest non-governmental organisation, which addresses the needs of the population, particularly women and children, and the fight against poverty in Bangladesh, the first pilot project involving the Beekeeping Academy of Slovenia is now underway. Minister Pivec presented the Ministry’s plans for this year’s 2nd annual celebration of World Bee Day and mentioned an important document that is being drafted by the Ministry – the Government of the Republic of Slovenia’s Plan of Activities for World Bee Day up to 2022. The document defines the operations of the Slovenian government and other stakeholders up to 2022 under individual categories. The starting points and professional bases for the plan of activities were drafted by a special interministerial working group led by the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Food, and will soon be discussed by the government.

On the occasion, President of the National Assembly Dejan Židan emphasised the importance of the beekeeping academy. “Since a lot of what we know is collected here. We have a wide range of knowledge gathered in one place.” In his address, Minister of Foreign Affairs Miro Cerar stated that “The world is increasingly associating Slovenia with unspoilt nature, a green and clean environment, and ensuring balanced and sustainable development.” President of the Slovenian Beekeepers’ Association Boštjan Noč noted that the beekeeping academy will leave a long-lasting legacy through the dissemination of knowledge at the global level. Chair of the Beekeeping Academy of Slovenia Damjana Grobelšek described the academy’s first year of operation as a period when the academy got up on its feet, and now it is trying to walk. “In addition to sharing knowledge with other countries and increasing our knowledge here in Slovenia, it is an opportunity for the future alignment of the academy with the area of apitourism. Educational models are already being developed for this area, and the academy already has various programmes, and will soon begin training instructors in how to share various types of beekeeping knowledge.”



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