Tanganyika Apicultural Limited

Tanganyika Apicultural Limited: Beekeeping For Sustainable Rural Tanzanian Livelihoods and Natural Preservation

Year Founded:
Organization type: 
for profit
Project Stage:
$50,000 - $100,000
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

WHAT IF - Inspiration: Write one sentence that describes a way that your project dares to ask, "WHAT IF?"

We support rural African farmers build beekeeping enterprises by connecting them to beekeeping experts, micro finance and more lucrative market.
About Project

Problem: What problem is this project trying to address?

Tanzania's forests are threatened by over-exploitation for firewood and charcoal production, unsustainable agricultural practices and animal husbandry.

Solution: What is the proposed solution? Please be specific!

We are providing rural Tanzanian beekeepers access to microcredit, trainings, and more lucrative markets as a way to promote female economic empowerment, incentivize the preservation of forests, and support the beekeeping and bee product industry throughout the value chain. Our operations focus on the most important quality preserving and value adding aspects of beekeeping such as introducing improved beekeeping technology and practices and ensuring that honey and beeswax is harvested, processed and packaged to the highest available standards. In doing so we aim to impart to rural African beekeepers that if they engage in adopt our best practices, there is a willing market for their bee products.
Impact: How does it Work

Example: Walk us through a specific example(s) of how this solution makes a difference; include its primary activities.

A female led agricultural cooperative may join our network of out growers by taking out a loan from us for improved beehives. We will coordinate with the local government to help them find land to install their hives as well as provide continuing trainings on beekeeping. In this way we will have given the female group members an additional source of income through an activity that demands very little in time expenditure. The villagers will also have an incentive to not chop down trees to sell them as firewood. Also, bees are very important animal pollinators, thus the hives will positively impact crop production. A recent study has shown that $1 invested in an African beekeeping out grower network results in over $15 of social impact.

Impact: What is the impact of the work to date? Also describe the projected future impact for the coming years.

Out intervention support female economic empowerment, for beekeeping is a lucrative activity that does not demand much time. By placing hives near forested and agricultural areas beekeeping support plant biodiversity and improves crop yeilds. Beekeeping provides an incentive for rural communities to preserve their trees since they will be deriving more income from the sale of bee products than from firewood and charcoal production. A recent study by the Rural Livelihood Development Company has shown that for every $1 invested in an East African beekeeping out grower network results in over $15 of social and environmental impact. Many other studies have shown that increased animal pollination may raise agricultural yeilds by 30% to 300%.

Spread Strategies: Moving forward, what are the main strategies for scaling impact?

Tanznia boast over 2 million beekeepers. Through coordination with governmental, NGO and micro financial partners we intend to raise the capacity of beekeepers in all of Tanzania's honey producing regions. We will market some of our own honey to break into foreign markets then expand opportunities for other beekeepers through our suite of extension services and supply chain support. Our market based intervention provides a trenchant solution to deforestation, rural poverty, and by stemming urban migration, we will also address the rapid slumification of Tanzania's cities.

Financial Sustainability Plan: What is this solution’s plan to ensure financial sustainability?

Tanganyika Apicultural Limited will rely on honey and beeswax sales, as well as the marketing of value added bee products (beeswax candles, lip balm, etc.) to support its proprietary beekeeping operations as well as supporting small rural beekeeping cooperatives and enterprises. We also will rely on microfinancial donors to provide startup capital for small scale beekeepers whom we will charge a minimal interest rate and initiation fee.

Marketplace: Who else is addressing the problem outlined here? How does the proposed project differ from these approaches?

Honey Care Africa has implemented a similar out grower model in Kenya and beekeeping has been a popular tool for the Tanzanian government and donors to support rural livelihoods. Our approach adds to and builds upon these preexisting efforts to introduce and scale up beekeeping. We focus on strenthening the bee product value chain, espcially the marketing of bee products and value added products. Without reliable and facile access to markets rural Tanzania would remain wary of the risk of heavily investing into beekeeping.

Founding Story

In 2001 I originally went to Tanzania to support market driven interventions to promote environmental preservation while fostering rural economic development. I decided to work in renewable energy. Late I met a Dutch woman who was passionate about beekeeping. We realized that beekeeping is a lucrative but low cost way to support rural livelihoods, economically empower women and promote sustainable forestry. While on a field trip with an engineering student to learn about honey harvesting practices I met Philemon Kiemi. Philemon is a Tanzanian beekeeper and entrepreneur of like mind and deep connections in the sector. We found that we had complementary skill set and decided to start Tanganyika Apicultural Limited.
About You
Opportunity Developers Inc.
About You
First Name


Last Name


About Your Project
Organization Name

Opportunity Developers Inc.

How long has your organization been operating?

Organization Country

Tanzania, Singida

Country where this project is creating social impact


What awards or honors has the project received?
Funding: How is your project financial supported?



Sustainable Sourcing, Opportunities for Women, Smallholder Farmers.

Audience: Who have you identified as your customer/recipient groups and do these groups value your solution for different reasons? How do you engage different customer/recipient groups to deliver your solution?

We have identified rural Tanzanian communities and communities ini Tanzania where the issue of forest preservation is important. We plan to engage them through our trainings and advertising efforts as we try to support rural traditional beekeepers, encourage them to adopt modern beekeeping practices and engage in beekeeping at a commercial level.

Scaling the solution: How would the prize money and publicity help you to achieve your objectives over the next two years?

The prize money and publicity of this competition would draw increased attention to our intervention from the public, the Tanzanian government and other NGO's and donors working in the rural economic development and environmental preservation sector. With the prize money we would invest in leasing a larger storage and office space, beehives at our demonstration apiary, a vehicle and representation at trade fairs. The publicity from this competition would also greatly contribute to our marketing efforts to retailers, serving to highlight that our products (honey, beeswax candles) are socially and environmentally responsible.

Experience: Please provide examples of any previous entrepreneurial initiatives you have pioneered

I started a crowdfunding campaign for installing solar panels on rural Tanzanian healthcare facilities in order to provide electricity for light microscopy for malaria detection, lighting for nighttime procedures and vaccine refrigeration. The investment would be supported by an associated cell phone charging enterprise.

Are you are eligible to attend the Accelerator event in Cambridge and subsequent events in London, UK in January, 2015?


Will you require a visa to enter the UK?

Are you are a current Unilever employee?