This year’s Fruit Logistica exhibitor fair in Berlin provided the perfect opportunity for Bayer Bee Care to launch a Feed A Bee initiative to support pollinators. Attended by more than 70,000 people from around the world and attracting many companies from all sectors of the fruit and vegetable food chain business, the event was the ideal setting for us to highlight the importance of insect pollination to sustainable agriculture. Bees and other pollinators play an essential role in the production of many of our fruits, vegetables and nuts which make up a balanced, healthy diet. For this we need healthy pollinators.
Visitors to our Bayer stand at Fruit Logistica could learn more about bees and other pollinators in the agricultural setting and support us in creating more foraging habitat for bees and other pollinators. How did they do this – easy – for each person signing up to receive our Bee Care newsletter, we have pledged to plant 50 m² of pollinator-friendly flowers on their behalf at a separate event to be held later this year in Germany.
To varying extents, bees and other pollinators help bring fresh fruits, vegetables and nuts to our food tables.
It is widely accepted by the bee research community that bees face many challenges in the modern world. Often the situation is complex due to the fact that there are many factors which alone, or in combination, can impact the health of bees. For honey bees, the main factors include diseases and pests, particularly the destructive Varroa mite which transmits deadly viruses to honey bees, but other factors such as weather, beekeeping and agricultural practices can also play a role. For wild bees, of which there are more than 20,000 different species worldwide, loss of habitat for nesting and foraging for food is one of the main issues. For all bee species, good nutrition is necessary for them to stay healthy and therefore they all need a good supply of nectar and pollen-rich plants and flowers throughout the season.
While honey bees are generalists and happily forage on many crop and plant species, many individual wild bee species feed on only one or a limited range of plant species. If the areas where these plants grow are reduced or removed, those wild bee species which tend to fly only short distances from where they nest so do not have a very broad foraging range, will decline or disappear.
This is why we have launched our Feed A Bee initiative as part of the Bee Care Program, to raise awareness of the need for foraging habitat and to get people involved. Interested in joining and giving your support to pollinators? Then just sign up to receive our bi-monthly newsletter and join in to plant foraging habitat “Because Pollinators Matter”!
To learn more about our North American Feed A Bee activities, take a look at the website.
Which pollinators are important for which crops – our crop attractiveness studies help understanding in this area.
Our “Areas in Bloom” project also helped promote public awareness of the need for foraging habitat.
Interested in other things you can do around your garden to help pollinators? Take a look here.
In this interview, Coralie van Breukelen-Groeneveld, Head of Bayer Bee Care Center, explains why promoting the need for more pollinator foraging habitat is important and why ‘Pollination Matters’ when aspiring a balanced, healthy diet.