Market Assessment

Beekeeping Value Chain Finance, SNV Rwanda, 2009

    The study gives an overview of the beekeeping sector in Rwanda, and the unmet financial needs of actors at different stages along this value chain. Following the introduction, the second section analyses Rwandan beekeeping. It provides relevant background information, examines production and consumption trends, and identifies key actors. The section closes with a useful value chain map. Section Three analyses value chain finance in Rwanda's beekeeping sector. It explores both the demand for financial services and the key institutions that supply credit in the sector. Capacity gaps are identified, and recommendations made to address them. In Section Four, the need for greater financial knowledge, business skills and commercially-oriented attitudes is asserted. Based on this view, the study proposes actions at both programme and national levels. The final section proposes a sequence of activities that SNV should undertake, in order of priority.

    Summary of results
    According to the study, the financial needs of different actors in the beekeeping value chain are broadly as follows:

    • At the honey production level, the average loan requirement to purchase modern hives and associated equipment ranged from RWF 75,000 - 125,000 (US$ 133 - 223) an amount considered too low by commercial banks due to the high costs that are involved in appraising, disbursing and following up loans.
    • At the primary collection and bulking levels, the average financial requirement ranged from RWF 4,000,000 - 13,000,000 (US$ 7,142 - 23,214). This was found to be easily accessible from commercial banks and financial institutions.

    The study recommends the following interventions:

    • Sensitise producers on the importance of using modern hives
    • Build the capacity of producers to keep records that can demonstrate viability
    • Encourage the development of a savings culture
    • Encourage honey producers to establish and build the already existing co-operatives into strong financial institutions
    • Build the capacity of board members and staff of co-operatives
    • Sensitise and empower members to elect focused and results-oriented board members and to report cases of embezzlement and mismanagement
    • Build record keeping capacity
    • Change attitudes; increase knowledge and business skills
    • Reduce financial risk by encouraging a) uptake of government agricultural credit guarantees and b) diversification of income-generating activities