About one-third of the world’s crops depend on the honeybees for pollination. The past decades honeybees have been dying at an alarming rate. Fewer bees will eventually lead to less availability of our favorite whole foods and it will also drive up the prices of many of the fruits and veggies we eat on a daily basis.
While some actions have been taken in the past, our bees are still dying and something needs to be done to make sure our most favorite foods don’t go into extinction.
What’s Causing Massive Bee Deaths?
About fifty years ago our world looked a whole lot different. Bees had an abundance of flowers to feast on and there were fewer pests and diseases threatening their food chain. These days however, nature has to make place for industrialization and our bees are having a hard time finding good pollen and nectar.
And if clearing their dinner tables from good quality food wasn’t bad enough already, farmers are extensively using herbicides and insecticides, which cause a phenome called Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD) where bees get disorientated and poisoned and can’t find their way back to the hive. Or when they manage to get back, they die from intoxication.
“We need good, clean food, and so do our pollinators. If bees do not have enough to eat, we won’t have enough to eat. Dying bees scream a message to us that they cannot survive in our current agricultural and urban environments,” states Marla Spivak, an American entomologist, and Distinguished McKnight University Professor at the University of Minnesota.
List of Foods We Will Have To Go without If The Bees Go
While we don’t need bees to pollinate all our food because they either self-pollinate or rely on the wind (like rice, wheat, and corn), many of our favorite foods will disappear from our kitchen tables.
Foods in the danger zone include:
- Kiwi Fruit
- Passion Fruit
- Cruciferous vegetables
- Lemons and limes
- Chili peppers, red peppers, bell peppers, green peppers
- Many seeds and nuts
A substantial drop in population, or complete extinction, of honeybees will make these food scares or even non-existent. So to keep our body healthy and our kitchen table interesting we have to take action before it is too late.
What You can Do
- Plant bee friendly plants in your garden or green community space.
- Limit the use of pesticides or use organic alternatives.
- Buy local, organically grown produce and honey to support the beekeepers and farmers in your area.
- Donate to non-profit organizations, like Pollinator Partnership, to help protect, grow, and strengthen bee populations.