The origin of our marketing initiative is interesting. The honeyhunters needed an assured marketing support. Thus, with the intention to give the honeyhunter a better price for an improved product, the marketing venture was taken up. Keystone wanted to clearly establish this as a `business venture with a development objective’ and approached the Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI) for support.

The marketing venture soon expanded from honey and bees wax products to other homestead items grown in small quantities by the communities. There are spices and coffee, organically grown but which would fetch a low rate from the traders due to inaccessibility of villages and trade malpractices. The procurement price set by Keystone, doubled the prevalent the honey purchase rates, added 10% for organic homestead produce to the prevalent wholesale market prices and placed a price on bees wax, which was being wasted.

Keystone sells through a network of distributors and through its `Green Shops’ in Kotagiri, Coonoor and Ooty.

The Purpose Behind Enterprise

It began in 1995, with the purchase of honey and bees wax but today encompasses a huge range of products that are not only collected, harvested, processed & packed in village value addition units but produce that is also sourced from similar like-minded organisations. The focus areas for enterprise development are the following: