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Slovenia's initiative on World Honeybee Day one step before implementation

Rome, 5 July - The conference of the UN's Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) on Wednesday unanimously backed Slovenia's initiative for the UN to declare 20 May World Honey Bee Day. Slovenia now awaits the green light from the General Assembly of the UN in December.

Brdo pri Lukovici.
Bees hives.
Photo: Tina Kosec/STA

Agriculture Minister Dejan Židan, who tweeted of the success at the FAO conference, addressed the Rome meeting on the occasion.

He believes that Slovenia's initiative to declare 20 May World Honeybee Day, which got under way in 2014, has a 95% chance of success. According to him, the day could be first celebrated next year, with Slovenia hosting the world conference on the honeybee a day before, on 19 May.

Židan also stressed that honeybee and beekeeping were a field where Slovenia excels. It is one of the few fields where Slovenia can label itself a superpower, he said.

Slovenia chose 20 May as World Honeybee Day because it was the birthday of Slovenia's pioneer beekeper Anton Janša (1734-1773), who is considered the first teacher of modern beekeeping in the world.

Slovenian beekeepers produce about 2,000 tonnes of honey a year, depending on weather conditions, official statistics show, while the annual domestic demand ranges from 2,500 to 3,000 tonnes.

Židan will hold several bilateral meetings on the margin of the conference, which is held every two years, including with FAO director general Jose Graziano da Silva.

In the Vatican, he will also meet Cardinal Peter Turkson.

© STA, 2017