Bayer program generates buzz
The line at the pollinator all-you-can-eat buffet is a little longer this year thanks to the contributions of consumers and partners joining Bayer’s Feed a Bee initiative to plant more than 65 million flowers in 2015. More than 250,000 consumers joined the initiative to feed pollinators as the Feed a Bee website and #FeedABee hashtag went viral.
By the end of the year, more than 70 organizations joined in pledging thousands of acres of land to the pollinator potluck dinner, all while educating the community about the role bees play in producing fruits, nuts and vegetables.
“When we talk to the public, the most common question we hear is, ‘What can I do to help bees?’ ” says Becky Langer, manager of the North American Bee Care Program. “Providing pollinators with abundant, diverse food sources is one of the most important things we can all do to promote bee health. We created Feed a Bee to make it easy for folks to be involved. We’re delighted with the overwhelming response and look forward to getting even more people involved this year.”
Ample food aids bees
Studies show when bees have access to adequate, diverse food sources they are better able to withstand the stress caused by the devastating varroa mite, as well as other mites and diseases. Through Feed a Bee, Bayer is working to increase forage options for bees and other pollinators at a time when agriculture is relying on them more to help produce enough food to feed a growing world population.
The first year of the Feed a Bee program set the bar high, and Bayer aims to generate even more buzz in 2016 by establishing national partnerships and educating more consumers about what they can do to get involved and help pollinators thrive. Through online activations and events throughout the year, Bayer hopes to reach new audiences to surpass the milestones Feed a Bee achieved in 2015.
“We’ve seen some great news in pollinator health in the past year from increasing population numbers to heightened involvement from consumers and other stakeholders,” says Jim Blome, president and CEO of CropScience, a division of Bayer. “We still have much more work to do to ensure the future health of our honeybee colonies, but we hope the foundation we have from Feed a Bee will continue to bring more partners to the table.”
Feed a Bee continues to attract partners from the nonprofit, public and private sectors, most recently the Pheasants Forever wildlife conservation group. Other partners signing on in 2015 span across individuals, industry sectors and geographies.
“We look forward to building on the success we had in 2015 as we take the Feed a Bee program into 2016,” says Langer. “None of this would have been possible without the support of everyone from the individuals who planted the wildflower packets they received to our partners who planted acres of additional forage.”
Feed a Bee is one of several programs sponsored by Bayer’s Bee Care Program, continuing nearly 30 years of supporting bee health. For more information, visit beehealth.bayer.us. You can follow on Twitter @BayerBeeCare, Facebook at facebook.com/BayerBeeCareCenter and view photos on Flickr.
Bayer is committed to bringing new technology and solutions for agriculture and non-ag uses. For questions concerning the availability and use of products, contact a local Bayer representative, or visit CropScience, a division of Bayer, online at bayercropscience.us.
Source: Bayer CropScience
This article published in the February, 2016 edition of WALLACES FARMER.
All rights reserved. Copyright Farm Progress Cos. 2016.
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