Spring comes and with it begins the beautiful time of blossoming flowers and fruit trees. In a very short time the bees will produce honey, which we can enjoy. All this is possible thanks to the bees. The bees play an important role in the pollination of the plants. In recent years, however, bee mortality has increased rapidly. What can be done about it?
Can you imagine a world without bees?
Bees contribute to 80% of the reproduction of plant species. Can you imagine a world without bees?
This is what a supermarket without bees would look like
What if there were no more bees? 60% of the products would have disappeared from the shops.
Apart from a few bananas and pineapples, which are not pollinated by bees but by other animals, the fruit department is empty. The shelves in other departments are also barely stocked. This is what the supermarket would look like after the death of the bees. The German chain Penny has cleared out one of its stores for demonstration. 1,500 items, or about 60% of the products, disappeared from the store.
Mathias Götti Limacher, central president of the beekeepers' association "BienenSchweiz", believes that the shelves in Switzerland would look similarly empty after the death of the bees as in Germany. As far as diversity is concerned, about 80 percent of food is pollinated by insects, he says to the newspaper “20 Minuten”.
What impact on our lives?
However, whether a famine would arise if honey and wild bees became extinct is difficult to answer, according to Götti Limacher. In terms of calories, only a third of the food would disappear. The consequence, however, would be that our diet could become even more one-sided and thus possibly deficient.
The death of bees would also have massive effects that we would not only feel when we buy food: On the one hand, there are many products, such as cosmetics, that contain substances dependent on bees and could not be bought in this form. On the other hand, the lack of pollination in particular would severely impair the biodiversity of our ecosystems.
Protecting bees: 7 things you can do
1 | Seed bee friendly plants
A bee-friendly plant can be something flowering in a balcony box, a fruit tree in the garden or wild plants. All this offers a wide range of possibilities for honey bees, butterflies, bumblebees and the many tiny solitary bees. Combined with each other, they form oases for hungry pollinators in the city.
2 | Choose honey from your region
Almost 80% of our honey consumption comes from imports. Honey from the supermarket is often a mixture of honeys from non-EU countries. They are likely to contain honey from South America - where genetically engineered plants are grown on a large scale and their pollen then gets into the honey. Besides the environmental pollution caused by the long transport routes, bee diseases can also be introduced. It is therefore sensible to prefer honey from your region directly from the beekeeper.
3 | No use of pesticides
You should avoid bee-damaging pesticides, weeds and pest control agents, i.e. pesticides, herbicides and biocides in your house and garden. Especially cocktails of several poisons can be deadly.
Tip: Do not use pesticides but natural products. Prefer mowing or hand mowing, mowing at intervals over time and waiting for the wild flowers to fade.
4 | Prefer bee friendly food
Seasonal food from regional organic farming is usually better, as bee-damaging pesticides are avoided. Also be fair to the producers: Quality and bee-friendliness are worth their price, so pay a fair price for your honey.
5 | Stop bee diseases - Always rinse honey jars
Diseases such as the American foulbrood are introduced into our country. The triggering endospores are spread by honey residues in glass containers. In autumn the bees fly on it and thus bring the deadly disease into the native colonies. Therefore, honey jars are best washed in the dishwasher before throwing them into the glass container or when buying them, make sure that they are reusable.
6 | Become a bee sponsor
With a bee sponsorship, you actively support the sustainable strategy of settling and caring for the honeybee in the city to save it. As a bee sponsor you will receive a glass of honey from your sponsoring In addition there is an individual sponsorship certificate.
7 | Offer nesting facilities for wild bees
300 of the native 560 wild bee species are on the "Red List". Offer nesting facilities for wild bees. It does not have to be a huge "bee or insect hotel", even with little effort the bees can be helped. Due to urbanisation and the intensification of the rural economy, these habitats are becoming increasingly rare. In addition, masonry bees are completely harmless for humans and animals.
We did it !
We ordered our BeeHome and installed it outside our offices in Sierre in Switzerland. The adventure begins! So we can follow the development of our wild bees and discover our hatching bees, search for pollen and take care of their offspring.
Your Honey in glass jars
Buy your honey directly from the beekeeper
If you are concerned about the environment, contact a beekeeper directly for your honey and take your honey glass jar with you. In addition to supporting local agriculture, protect the environment by avoiding disposable packaging.
Enjoy the fruits from your garden
Their additionally propagated masonry bees make an important contribution to the safe and efficient pollination of fruit trees on farms. Enjoy your delicious homemade jams in preserving glass jars.
Offer honey and sensitise your loved ones
For a birthday present, wedding or special occasion, delight your loved ones by offering them homemade jams or honey in personalised glass jars. In this way your relatives will also be made aware of your approach!