Why Saving Bees Now is Important for Our Future Survival
2 CommentsWednesday, 24 February 2021 | Nicola Wood & Ken Shaw
Bees are a keystone species; without them, ecosystems would collapse and much of life would become extinct. Bees are vital for pollinating wild plants, which supports biodiversity for healthy ecosystems. Honeybees also pollinate many of our food crops, so if bees disappeared, we’d no longer enjoy such availability and variety of fresh produce. That would lead to poor nutrition and even starvation among humans.
Why Bees are So Important
Small but mighty, bees are crucial pollinators. The UN agency, IPBES (Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services – quite a mouthful, we know), states that 35% of our food depends on pollinating insects like bees. If we lost bees, humans could literally starve! At the very least, our diets would be restricted, and our nutrition and development would suffer. So spare a thought for the humble bumble next time you’re tucking into your salad.
And it’s not just fruit ‘n’ veg production that the fuzzy-buzzies support. They pollinate native wildflowers that other insects and animals depend on. Bees are vital to the health of their ecosystem; if they’re lost, birds and mammals die out too.
What Threats do Bees Face?
- Diseases and predators: including the varroa parasite, viruses, fungi, bacteria, and invasive non-native plant species
- Pesticides and intensive farming methods: insecticides are highly toxic to bees, while modern agricultural practices degrade and pollute their environment
- Loss of habitat: when wildflower meadows are razed, bees have nowhere to nest or find food
- Climate change: this is speeding up habitat destruction and raising temperatures to levels that bees can’t handle
Because of these threats, beekeepers are facing increasing losses year on year. One German study showed that in the past 30 years, Europe has lost over 75% of its flying insects, including bees. According to a 2014 study by Reading University, mainland Europe has a deficit of 13.4 million hives - that’s a lot of missing pollinators.
When it comes to honey production, France is really struggling. The country can no longer produce all the honey its people consume; demand has outstripped supply. France is now forced to import honeys from around the world, but some are not authentic or ethically produced. In 2015, the EU revealed that out of 1200 imported honeys, over 30% were inauthentic and impure; some even contained added sugar!
How You Can Help Bees and Ensure Human Survival
The easiest - but arguably most important - thing you can do is to buy ethical honey. We stock Bleu Blanc Ruche honey because not only is it deliciously indulgent, but it’s also ethically produced. Bleu Blanc Ruche actively works to repopulate France with bees; every jar you buy contributes to their goal. Here’s how:
- Bleu Blanc Ruche partners with beekeepers who share their eco-minded values
- The brand purchases the beekeepers’ honeys at a higher-than-typical price
- The beekeepers then invest that extra money into increasing their hive numbers
- Both parties sign a contract to ensure they remain committed to the cause
- The brand gives beekeepers long-term stability and bees a chance to repopulate!
Besides treating yourself to some luxurious, ethical, and did-we-mention-delicious Bleu Blanc Ruche honey, you can help bees in other ways. You could try planting native bee-friendly flowers, buying organic produce that hasn’t been sprayed with pesticides, or building a bee hotel so bumbles have somewhere to nest.
Would saving bees give you a buzz? Would you consider buying ethical honey to give bees a chance and save humans from certain doom? Our future is in your sticky fingers! Let us know your thoughts in the comments.