Linking Livelihoods and Environment
EA promotes innovative farm and livelihood options in the rural areas of Nagaland. With abundant and rich natural resources, there is huge untapped opportunity in the region.
Community Led Mithun Rearing for Livelihood and Conserving Forests
One of the most successful livestock projects by Entrepreneurs Associates (EA) is the Community
led Mithun rearing for Livelihood and Conserving Forests, supported by the Sir Ratan Tata/ Navajbhai
Ratan Tata Trust, Mumbai. The pilot project began in 2011 in the community forest in Thetsumi village,
Phek district. Based on the success of the project, the project extended to 4 more villages: Porba,
Enhulumi, Losami, and Pholami.
The mithun (Bos frontalis) is a valuable animal in the Naga culture. It is reared by villagers in the forest wild. EA experimented and studied the traditional strategies of indigenous rearing and came up with the barbed wire permamnent fencing of forest areas for mithun rearing. While this allowed the mithuns to be reared in protected areas, it crearted mithun sanctuaries where the forests were protected. Thus, the project followed a unique method of enhancing passive livelihood income through mithun rearing coupled with conservation of forests. Livelihood and conservation of forests is a multidimensional issue, which needs concerted and well packaged intervention.
In a pioneering pilot project, EA completed a trial run of natural honey under the name ‘Naga Honey’
to assess the market response. The natural honey is procured from Kiding Village, a tiny village
tucked in the hills of Tuensang district. Honey bee rearing and harvesting has been an age old
tradition of the village as depicted by the beautiful folklores of the village. For the project,
EA worked closely with farmers on a profitable model who engaged in bee rearing by providing
finance to procure bee boxes, and ensuring quality control to maintain 100% pure honey. In addition
to the livelihood aspect of the honey project, traditional beekeeping shows great promise to
improve population of traditional bee species, Apis cerana. Bees are important pollinators
contributing to conservation of genetically bio-diverse flora in an area.
The EA pilot project under the name Naga Honey; Nagaland’s Natural and Golden Asset participated in the Karen’s Farmers’ Market in Pune on February 26, 2017. Thereafter, the team visited the Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai campus from March 1-3 where the response from the students was overwhelming. And on March 5, 2017, the team participated in the Kavita Mukhi’s Farmers’ Market in Mumbai.