On the Topic of Honey Bees and the Impact of Their Endangerment.
Honey Bees are responsible for more than just the honey we eat; they’re pollinating crops and increasing yields. According to the Morris Arboretum at UPenn, “Over one third of the food we eat relies on pollination by bees, either directly or indirectly. Many fruits, nuts, and vegetables require pollination by bees and other insects in order to yield fruit, and without pollinators these crops could all but disappear from grocery store shelves.” There are several threats involved in the destruction of entire colonies, resulting in about 45% of beekeepers losing their hive, pesticides being number one.
So how can we, as individuals, make a difference in this industry? The first and most important step is to avoid foods grown using pesticides that contain neonicotinoids. This refers particularly to wheat, corn, soy and other agriculturally grown products that involve high production rates. Second, support local and organic! This could mean starting a garden of your own, shopping at your local farmers markets or just simply checking the information regarding your produce to make sure it was produced sustainably; did it come from within your own state, the U.S. or from elsewhere? Is it labeled organic? Even if a product is labeled organic, it’s often worth digging deeper. Sometimes organic agriculture processes still use pesticides that are harmful to bees.
All this being said, it’s not too late to change the course of history. Just by making small changes to our own lifestyle, we can change the lives of dozens, if not hundreds of bees, and that impact can only expand further. It is our goal as individuals within a community to live cohesively with Honey Bees and other bee species, as they are the pollinators contributing to our food chain. We’re all relying on each other for survival, even if we don’t notice it directly.
– Boris Baer and Denis Anderson, “Getting the Buzz on the Value of Bees ,” Science (Australian Academy of Science, April 14, 2016), .org.au.
-Maria Cannon, “Cms.business-Services.upenn.,” Cms.business-Services.upenn. (blog) (Morris Arboretum, University of Pennsylvania, September 26, 2017), .edu.