Tom Hebert came back this past July 2016, again as a volunteer through the USAID Farmer-to-Farmer program, administered by Partners of the Americas. Tom’s mission was to support the island’s new top bar beekeepers and to present sustainable top bar hive beekeeping to the more than 100,000 attendees of the Denbigh Agricultural Exposition, Jamaica’s largest annual agricultural show. Tom represented the St. Mary RADA (Rural Agricultural Development Agency), which committed their entire pavillion to the Plan Bee theme.
As always, Tom was dedicated, professional and diligent – even while leading apiary-based workshops to beekeepers from around the island, Tom used every day to prepare for his Denbigh presentation. To be fully sustainable, beekeeping must be economically sustainable. Tom’s particular skill is in designing and building low-cost beekeeping equipment that still gets the job done perfectly. Tom built hives made of grass, thatch, cloth, and zinc. He built a smoker with a biscuit tin. Every part of his presentation was creative, attractive, and well thought-out.
All who are ready to be inspired by Tom’s experience and perspective should visit his blog, Musings on BeekeepingMusings on Beekeeping. Thank you, Tom, for the gift of your time and energy! And, as always, much thanks to Partners of the Americas and to the Farmer-to-Farmer program who gave us this chance to learn from Tom.