Conservation and Development Program
This Program stimulate an alternative development strategy which values local communities´ culture and at the same time safeguards Atlantic Forest biodiversity. It work towards the expansion and strengthening of basic health and education services and enhancing citizenship rights while at the same time undertaking research and promoting an overall recognition of the intrinsic values of nature by the public.
The management of stingless bees or meliponiculture is a literally sweet and less risky business than the better-known beekeeping of European or African bees (with stings). In addition to easing their management by not having a sting, these native bees known as meliponini produce an excellent and tasty honey.
Each beehive can produce from 1 to 6 liters of honey a year, in addition to other products such as pollen, wax, and a resinous-like material collected by the bees called propolis, all of which highly esteemed for their medicinal properties.
As a source of income, these products are helping small farmers in the Guaraqueçaba EPA south of Brazil generate additional resources on top of other agricultural crops. Moreover, the little bees have a key role in conservation of biodiversity. As opposed to their European/African counterparts, meliponini are native to Brazil, and as such they help pollinate native forest species that depend on this process for their survival.
SPVS has supported the local association of native bee husbandry Acriapa through a partnership initiative. The cooperative is consolidating itself as a cost-eﬀective alternative for small producers that live in or around almost extinct remnants of Atlantic Forest.
Through meliponiculture, they are earning additional income while helping protect nature and conserve biodiversity.