Rwanda Standards Board

Rwanda Bureau of Standards Urges Honey Producers to Go for High Production Volumes

Rwanda Bureau of Standards (RBS) Director General, Dr. Mark Cyubahiro Bagabe, urged honey producers to go high for production. In an encounter with media, the Director General noted that in addition to the edible property, honey is a very interesting product that can act as a medicine to cure different illnesses such as cough and injury after surgery as it has got antibiotic properties. “Rwanda has honey production potentials as the country is endowed by forests and bushes like Nyungwe and the savannah in the East. Those vegetations are opportunities to honey production” the Director General said.

The Director General also announced that there are export opportunities open for producers due to the presence of big markets in the Middle East and Europe but the challenge is the low production volume.


What has RBS done to upgrade the quality of Rwandan honey?

RBS has been striving to upgrade the quality of honey. The Bureau started by developing Honey Standards, establishing Quality Testing Laboratories and today RBS is able to test 16 parameters in honey. Honey must be tested to check if bees did not bring in pollen involving heavy metals like copper and others. RBS has the capacity to test for 27 heavy metals, which are contaminants, such as copper, lead, mercury, arsenic, ironic, etc. The Director General informed that RBS has taken a multiple-pronged approach to ensure that Rwandan honey is international Standards compliant. The Bureau offered training to honey producers on the aspects of producing quality products looking on the whole value chain. As per today, RBS has certified five honey processing companies and some of these companies have started exporting their products.

The two main challenges remain to be addressed by beekeepers. They need to go for high volume bee hives to increase their produce and avoid dioxine (smoke) which is carcinogenic (cancer agent). RBS raised awareness on these issues as they are the main challenges to exports and set up quality control measures.