FARMABiH Success stories: Goran Mirjanić – Košnica, Gradiška

“Košnica was a small private family company in Gradiška that sold beekeeping equipment and accessories and a small amount of honey from family hives. We believed that we could not make our business bigger, that this was our entrepreneurial maximum. I overheard about the USAID helping improve beekeeping and turned to them for help. Košnica received a grant and our growth and development began. Today we have modern equipment for honey packaging and packaging of bee products, as well as a wide market for their placement in BiH. The grant funds we received were the help we needed, but we took that help as proof that we are worth it and that good work pays off. We gained confidence in ourselves, our work and realized that we could realize bigger ideas, so we built our own building, our own facility. Everything started to be much easier and everything happened faster: we branded our honey Med Medeni, got the EU standard (Codex alimentarius), increased the number of subcontractors and ensured the purchase and regular payment, which allowed us to expand production. Howver, we have a new goal – to increase the number of women beekeepers, because they have to be involved in this story as well! Then we will focus on apitourism in the apiaries of our subcontractors – beekeeping tourism which includes visits to apiaries, introduction to production technologies, tasting of bee products in the tasting room and sale of honey and other bee products. Beekeeping is not just a hobby or tradition. It is an advanced field of agriculture. Beekeeping companies show every day how profitable this area is and I believe that my example can encourage others to start this business as well.”