FARM HISTORY

After collapse of USSR Mr. Ioseliani and Mr. Lezhava decided to continue beekeeping tradition of their family and transform it in business. The first business in beekeeping sector was related to bee venom production. After gathering some capital for business expansion, they have increased the number of beehives and started queen bee and honey production. In the beginning of 00`s the annual production of queen bees exceeded 10,000. The main market for them has been Turkey. Besides Turkey they managed to export queen bees to France for a short time (1,500 queen bees annually until 2003), before new EU regulations entered in force. At the end of 00`s changes were towards Turkey. Turkey has forbidden import of queen bees and established high tariff on import of honey for Georgia. However, the beekeepers until recently have managed to became one of the largest cross-border traders. In 2010 they purchased wax foundation printing machine as the part of the Millennium Program and began offering printing service to local beekeepers. Since then, the village Bashi (the main base) has become the hub for honey and queen bee traders as well as for local beekeepers. Over the last 25 years of operation in this sector both beekeepers were involved in production of all types of bee and by-products. However, the main business direction has been queen bee breeding despite the fact that they have been harvesting a large amount of honey as well. Mr. Ioseliani and Mr. Lezhava have tried to diversify their market and find a new one for their honey. Over the last decade both beekeepers drastically increased their apiaries. Currently, their common apiaries count more than 3,500 beehives which are spread in 20 different beekeeping bases all around Georgia.