Improving small-scale beekeepers‘ access to global markets and financing (FOCAPIS)

Today's global mar­ket de­mand on honey is 518 000 tons, es­pe­cially the Eu­ro­pean Union is an im­por­tant dri­ver for honey pro­duc­tion in Cen­tral Amer­ica. The As­so­ci­a­tion Agree­ment be­tween Cen­tral Amer­ica and the Eu­ro­pean Union has opened new mar­ket op­por­tu­ni­ties since bee­keep­ing is geared pri­mar­ily to in­ter­na­tional mar­kets with 85% to 90% of pro­duc­tion being sold for ex­port mainly to the Eu­ro­pean Union mar­ket of both of the coun­tries. This cre­ates new chal­lenges, namely tech­ni­cal re­quire­ment, that must be met in order to ac­cess the EU mar­ket.

The cur­rent sit­u­a­tion in the bee­keep­ing sec­tor in El Sal­vador and Nicaragua is char­ac­ter­ized with low skill de­vel­op­ment, lack of tech­nol­ogy use, low tech­no­log­i­cal level and a poor busi­ness ori­en­ta­tion of the bee­keep­ing co­op­er­a­tives. There is also a very lim­ited ac­cess to fi­nan­cial ser­vices and busi­ness de­vel­op­ment ser­vices.

The Project

The project focuses on building the capacity of small-scale producers through advanced trainings in good business practices, as well as technology and skills transfer, so that they can meet the requirements for honey production imposed by EU import standards. This will be enhanced through capacity building of beekeeper cooperatives so that they can apply comprehensive business models to make change in various areas.

Additionally, the project is in the process of developing a technical support programme for manufacturers and suppliers of equipment and materials. They are being linked with financial institutions to enable access to financing for various actors in the honey value chain. Furthermore, the project is working on organic honey certification to facilitate access to new international markets and increase the purchasing prices of honey.  


Expected results in both countries:

  • 960 small-scale beekeepers trained in good business practices
  • 10 cooperatives, associations, and SMEs trained in business development
  • 60 suppliers of equipment, tools and technology will have undergone further training  
  • Improved skills and technology transfer from businesses to small-scale beekeepers
  • Small-scale beekeepers enjoy better access to financial services

    Project partner

    • Ministry of Agriculture and Animal husbandry and the Institute of Agricultural Health and Protection
    • The El Salvador National Commission of Apiculture; the “Cadena de la Miel” (“Honey Value Chain”) association as a representative body for producers in El Salvador
    • The Nicaraguan National Beekeeping Commission (CNAN) and National Honey Producers Association (PRONAMIEL) as a representative body for producers in Nicaragua
    • Mieles Joya de Cerén and APIDOSA as lead firms in El Salvador and Nicaragua

    Project countries

    • Nicaragua
    • El Salvador

    Project duration

    2017 - 2020


    • SDC

    Working area


    Swiss Foundation for Technical Cooperation
    Hardturmstrasse 123
    CH-8005 Zurich

    Tel. +41 44 454 17 17
    Fax +41 44 454 17 97