We use cookies to optimize this website.
By using this website, you are agreeing to our use of cookies.    Learn more

Improving small-scale beekeepers‘ access to global markets (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.  


At the end of the three-year implementation phase, the project is expected to show the following results:

  • Average increase in turnover of small beekeepers of at least 25% in El Salvador and 30% in Nicaragua.
  • 361 new jobs created (180 in El Salvador and 181 in Nicaragua).
  • An average increase of 20% in the annual turnover of exporting companies.
  • In terms of results, the intervention is expected to achieve the following objectives:
  • 720 (75%) of trained beekeepers adopt good breeding practices.
  • Increase the level of productivity per hive by at least 20% in Nicaragua and 22% in El Salvador compared to the baseline reference value.
  • 15 % increase in the number of production units (hives) in Nicaragua compared to the basic reference value.
  • Increase in the production volume of 200 kg/beekeeper in Nicaragua and 700 kg/beekeeper in El Salvador compared to the basic reference value.
  • 300 beekeepers gain access to high-quality equipment, tools and technologies.
  • 400 beekeepers gain access to financial services.
  • 432 beekeepers sell honey to cooperatives or exporters destined for the international market.
  • 10 beekeepers introduce new technologies and practices.
  • 80 institutions have access to the knowledge base developed by the project.

      Project countries

      • Nicaragua
      • El Salvador

      Project duration

      2016 - 2018


      • SDC
      • Inter-American Development Bank (IDB)
      • Medicor Foundation
      • Marcuard Family Office

      Working area


      Swiss Foundation for Technical Cooperation
      Hardturmstrasse 123
      CH-8005 Zurich

      Tel. +41 44 454 17 17
      Fax +41 44 454 17 97
      E-Mail info@STOP-SPAM.swisscontact.org