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Myanmar Honey Guide

Country Specific
Oct 19, 2021
Edited by
Jinwoo Cheon
HS Code: 040900 - Honey; natural
FAO Code: 1182 - Honey, natural
Share in Export
0.12%Rank 48
Share in Import
0%Rank 180
Share in Production
Export Volume
1Y +13.85%
Import Volume
1Y -76.78%

Production Supply Chain

How are international organizations involved in the Burmese honey sector?

In 2012, Tag International Development, together with Mashav, an Israel international cooperation agency, contacted the Myanmar government and explained their intention to train the rural population in modern techniques of beekeeping for the increase of household incomes in the target area and to create a new livelihood. Mr. Shaike Stern from Israel came to Myanmar again as an expert in the Plan Bee project.

The government agreed to the project and the Livelihood and Food Security Fund (LIFT) agreed to fund it. Then, Tag International Development, together with Apiculture, Livestock Breeding, and Veterinary Department as associate partners and local NGOs Parami Development Network (PDN) and Danu Literature, Culture and Regional Development Associations as implementation partners started the Plan Bee project in early 2013 till now.

In recent years, Myanmar's authorities have strengthened their capacity to implement the sanitary controls necessary to guarantee honey exports. ARISE Plus Myanmar works closely with these authorities, organizing training sessions and developing tools such as checklists and guidelines for Good Beekeeping Practices, Good Manufacturing Practices as well as Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points.

So far, more than 100 stakeholders from the honey sector attended the capacity-building activities of the project where experts from the International Trade Centre assisted the Apiculture Development Division in their reporting and laboratory testing in Germany.

ARISE Plus also supports the Government of Myanmar in issuing the public health attestation (veterinary certificate) that must accompany each honey export.


Challenges of exporting honey from Myanmar by U Myint Than, Apiculture Resources and Business Center

Myanmar: Now exporting honey to the European Union

Myanmar [Burma]

Seasonality of Main Producing Regions

What variety of Myanmar honey is produced and exported?

About half of the honey produced in Myanmar originates from jujube trees (Ziziphus jujube). Other crops include niger (Guizotia abysainica), sesame, sunflower, three-step flower (Leucas cephalotes), kapok (white silk cotton tree), pigeon-pea, forest flower, and lychee. About 10% of honey is estimated to stem from wildflowers. A fairly new crop that is used for honeydew production is from rubber trees. There is also expected to be a high future potential for honey from avocado and macadamia, with new plantations that started in 2012 in the Shan Highlands, in Eastern Myanmar.

Source: Myanmar Product Profile: Honey, Myanmar – EU Trade Helpdesk

Myanmar [Burma]

In which regions in Myanmar are honey produced and processed?

Myanmar honey is produced in all parts of Myanmar. There are currently about 900 beekeepers in Myanmar. Most of the 138,000 beehives are situated in the central region, mainly the Shan State and Mandalay Region. Only the honey from rubber trees is produced by beehives in the coastal area in the southern part of the country. Additionally, the country has six processing facilities, one of which is government-owned. 


Myanmar Product Profile: Honey, Myanmar – EU Trade Helpdesk

Challenges of exporting honey from Myanmar by U Myint Than, Apiculture Resources and Business Center

Myanmar [Burma]

What is the seasonality of Burmese honey?

In Myanmar, honey can be produced for the whole year round due to favorable weather conditions. Different varieties of honey are produced as below:

  • Jujube Honey: harvest from Sep to Dec and export Nov-Jan
  • Niger Honey, Mustard Honey: harvest from Nov to Dec and export Jan – April
  • Sunflower Honey: harvest Aug – Jan and export Feb - April
  • Rubber Honey: harvest Feb – May and export April to Aug
  • Sesame Honey: harvest Aug – Sep and export Oct – Nov
Myanmar [Burma]

Required Documents

When was Myanmar honey export approved to the EU market?

Myanmar can now export honey to the European Union (EU) according to an EU Commission Decision made on 29 July 2020.

Implemented by the International Trade Centre, the EU-funded ARISE Plus Myanmar project supports the private and public sectors in the country in boosting their exports of honey products within the economic space of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, and to the EU and global markets.

The EU approved Myanmar's National Residue Monitoring Plan for the importation of honey produced in Myanmar. Myanmar honey producers receiving orders from European countries can now sell and export their products, provided they meet the EU safety and quality requirements as well as standards for honey production.

'It is a milestone for the country that the EU recognizes the National Residue Monitoring Plan as a reliable instrument to monitor chemical residues in honey,' says Pamela Coke-Hamilton, Executive Director of the International Trade Centre. 'This is what creating added value is all about and I am pleased that we may now be able to sample this amazing product in Europe.' Dr. Johann Hesse, Head of Cooperation, Delegation of the European Union to Myanmar, says, 'Ensuring EU food safety and quality requirements through every level of the food supply chain is challenging, but rewarding. Myanmar beekeepers now have access to a market of 450 million consumers looking for quality products. Welcome to the EU!'

The approval is significant because it stands for safety in line with stringent EU food production requirements. It also promotes market competitiveness: two years ago, buyers from the EU showed their interest in buying honey from Myanmar but the country was not officially listed for honey exports to the EU. Now, beekeepers, collectors, and honey exporters can benefit.

Source: Myanmar: Now exporting honey to the European Union

Myanmar [Burma]


Why should you buy honey from Myanmar?

  • Myanmar is home to a high variety of exotic crops, which are the origin of many different types of honey all year round.
  • Honey is produced in a traditional way on a small scale, offering a stable source of income for beekeepers in rural areas.
  • Myanmar is also mostly free of common diseases that affect bees, so no treatment with antibiotics or other medicines is needed.
  • Secluded small-scale production also has advantages. Common bee diseases, such as varroa mites, have not occurred in Myanmar. Therefore, there is no medical treatment of the bees, except for the occasional use of formic and oxalic acids as organic treatments.
  • In the Eastern Asia and South East Asia region, Myanmar honey has a good reputation for its good quality and no pesticide or chemical content unlike honey from China, Vietnam, and Thailand which have high sugar content and chemical substance.
  • Myanmar honey is able to compete with Ukraine and Australia Honey in the future as premium honey. Furthermore, Myanmar honey is slightly more price-competitive than those of origin.
  • Myanmar honey is 100% pure, natural, traceable, fair-traded with antibiotics and pesticide-free practices.
  • Myanmar honey has been introduced Good Beekeeping practices since 2016.
  • Tag International Development has opened its beekeeping centre in Pindiya with Israeli expertise and trains the local beekeepers.
  • The EU Government has sent hundreds of honey samples to a Germany Laboratory since 2018 and it has approved that Myanmar honey has met the international standard and good quality.
  • Myanmar is home to a high variety of exotic crops, which are the origin of many different types of honey all year round.

Source: Myanmar Product Profile: Honey, Myanmar – EU Trade Helpdesk

Myanmar [Burma]

What is the current production capacity of Myanmar honey?

The beekeeping area in Myanmar is currently about 670 Ha, with an estimated annual production of between 4,000 and 5,000 tonnes of honey per year. Volumes produced are still low compared to other countries in the region such as China, Thailand, or Vietnam, but production has been growing steadily.

Source: Myanmar Product Profile: Honey, Myanmar – EU Trade Helpdesk

Myanmar [Burma]

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