Beekeepers from Gugulethu Mlindeli Kwaza and Vuyo Myoli hope to make a success of their apiary business. BRENDAN MAGAAR African News Agency (ANA)
Beekeepers from Gugulethu Mlindeli Kwaza and Vuyo Myoli hope to make a success of their apiary business. BRENDAN MAGAAR African News Agency (ANA)

Beehives of opportunity – entrepreneur aims to bring beekeeping and honey to Gugulethu

By Thandile Konco Time of article published Oct 23, 2021

Share this article:

Cape Town - Artist, gardener and bee keeper, Vuyo Myoli, aims to use his newly-founded beekeeping business to introduce a hive of entrepreneurial opportunity to Gugulethu.

Myoli, who is well-known in Gugulethu for being an artist, recently delved into beekeeping after suffering a loss in his agricultural ventures.

Myoli said that beekeeping is a closed-off industry which he intentionally pursued because he believes that it is one of the industries which could make a difference in local township economies.

“After a year of research, I did a short course in Durbanville, and through many challenges, I became a certified beekeeper. Everything in the industry was new to me, and I didn’t know anyone who had done it before, but I decided to put my fear aside and embrace as much knowledge as possible.”

Beekeepers from Gugulethu Mlindeli Kwaza and Vuyo Myoli hope to make a success of their apiary business. BRENDAN MAGAAR African News Agency (ANA)

Myoli said that the challenge of introducing the business of bees and honey to a black community included not having nearby associates or an established market of people that are well-informed on beekeeping and honey, but he instead changed his challenges into opportunities to introduce beekeeping to agricultural and entrepreneurial projects in townships.

“Bringing bees to Gugulethu and bringing economic opportunities to our people during a difficult time is important for me. Through pollination services and the production of honey, we are able to train the youth, and especially women, to create employment for themselves, as female independence plays a big role in solving GBV in our communities.”

To date, Myoli has placed hives in a project in Plattekloof and three market gardens in Gugulethu. He said that he hopes to extend his beekeeping business into neighbouring townships.

Myoli added that Gugulethu having its own honey trade would add additional pride to the product as consumers will know that the honey produced by his company will be made by the soil and vegetation of Gugulethu’s own gardens for the consumption of its people, instead of buying imported and illegitimate honey.

Beekeepers from Gugulethu, Mlindeli Kwaza and Vuyo Myoli, hope to make a success of their apiary business. BRENDAN MAGAAR African News Agency (ANA)

“A lot of what we eat is not even real honey. It's bad for your health. We need to introduce high quality honey and make it more accessible to people at good pricing. If more people are educated on the importance of bees and how they contribute to agriculture, ecosystems and how these things can be used to create a profit, local industries can flourish.”

Myoli’s business partner Mlindeli Kwaza said that they started a long-term friendship in the entertainment and art industry. He later joined Myoli in gardening and beekeeping endeavours.

“Once Vuyo went out and ventured into beekeeping and completed his beekeeping course, we embarked on a mission to introduce this industry to black people living in townships. The honey market is quite broad and will allow us to delve into different business opportunities, such as honey-based products, honey foods and beers.”

Gardener and owner of Asande Food Garden, Sibongile Sityebi, said that he met Myoli at an agricultural meeting and has since formed a partnership with him.

“He first started his beekeeping endeavours outside of the townships but then decided to bring it home. He decided to make it local and asked to place his beehives in my garden. I happily agreed to it as the bees help to pollinate my gardens.”

Sityebi jokingly added that the third service added by harvesting bees in his garden is that it keeps thieves and criminal activity as the Cape honeybee is known to be extremely hostile.

Weekend Argus

Share this article: