Things Are Getting Sticky for the Bee Industry
Between the drought in the West and a decline in colonies, life hasn’t been the bee’s knees for the striped pollinators.
The buzz: Bee colonies are currently seeing a 35% global decline every year, which subsequently impacts 75% of crops. Without bees, fruits and flowers don’t get pollinated, which is stinging the West Coast almond, plum, and apple crops.
And, unfortunately, that’s not all West Coast producers are facing. Drought and water issues are making things less than sweet, too.
Normally, Midwestern bees make the trip to California in the winter to pollinate fruits and other crops, but with drought in queen bee states like North Dakota, there are fewer bees, and it’s more expensive for West Coast producers to lease them.
Food chain fiasco: Less pollination means less food (and therefore more costly food for consumers). Plus, with an estimated 25 to 40% drag in domestic honey production, things are getting sticky.