To increase exports of bee feed from BiH to the EU, the Sweden/USAID FARMA II project helps Elmar Aroma Care from Trebinje improve the quality, and increase the quantities of the pioneer products containing silver and gold colloidal water.
“Silver is a natural antibiotic, and it is the most effective anti-viral and anti-fungal agent,” explains Njegomir Stolica from Trebinje, Southeastern Bosnia and Herzegovina.
He is the owner of Elmar Aroma Care, which produces organic cosmetics from medicinal and aromatic plants, and bee feed and protection spray enriched with the silver colloidal water that helps keep bees healthy and contributes to the higher honey yields.
Healthy properties of silver and gold
“Getting sufficient amounts of silver into bees, though not too much, is a tricky part. That is where the artificially produced colloidal water comes in,” says Njegomir.
“The colloidal water contains nanoparticles of silver not bigger than ten microns, which can easily be absorbed. These nanoparticles are helping bees recover from illness very similar to diarrhea, which is very lethal for the bees. Furthermore, sprays containing silver in a colloidal form are helping remove fungi from the bees, whereas the gold nanoparticles, combined with the herbal extracts, significantly improve their agility," he adds.
“This way, bees stay healthy. They can fly longer. They can be active for more days a year. As a result, they can produce much more honey!"
Colloidal water production and exports
The equipment Elmar Aroma Care currently uses to produce herbal mixes with the colloidal water is not sophisticated enough and quantities are limited to 200 liters a month.
Nonetheless, they are the first ones to start the production of the silver and gold colloidal water in Bosnia and Herzegovina and to mix it in bee feed and protection sprays. They already export those products to Germany, France, Italy, and Serbia, along with the Elmar Aroma Care cosmetics which include shampoos, hair conditioners, body lotions, facial creams, and others. In 2019, exports accounted for 83 percent of their sales.
Thanks to the Sweden/USAID FARMA II project, they will soon receive a specialized vacuum homogenizer machine. "With the new vacuum homogenizer, instead of 200 liters a month, we'll be able to produce 200 liters a day, and that will be something," says Njegomir. “We’ll be able to increase exports of bee feed and protection sprays by 25 times,” he emphasizes.
Education and new products
Njegomir notes that at the moment there isn't much awareness about the use of the silver and gold colloidal water amongst the beekeepers in BiH. "We need to do much more about the education of beekeepers in BiH when it comes to the use of silver and gold waters. I worked on it a little, but much more is needed."
Elmar Aroma Care now mainly exports bee feed and protection sprays, while in BiH they sell only to some 50 beekeepers in the Eastern Hercegovina.
Nonetheless, Njegomir has big plans. “Very soon, when our production of the silver and gold water increases, I will look to supply bee feed to the whole of BiH and a wider EU market. I also plan to start including silver and gold water into our cosmetics and make a big breakthrough at both domestic and international markets,” he concludes.