God Save the Queen Bees

I am so thankful for the bees ‒ the fragile agents ‒ who work tirelessly on our behalf. Much of our food chain depends on pollinators, yet many people are unaware of the essential role they play in creating our food supply. Part of The Joy of Plenty’s mission is to educate people about the role pollinators play in food production and to sound the alarm about the enormous pressure all pollinators are under from overuse of agricultural pesticides.

Last week, the United Nation’s Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) released a report on the current state of the biosphere (please see previous post). The report estimates that up to US$577 billion of the crops the world produces are at risk without bees to pollinate them. Bees are the linchpin of our food system and overuse of agricultural pesticides are one of the reasons they are weakening.

In a perfect world, if everyone ate organic food, the need for toxic agricultural chemicals would diminish and this would greatly help the bees. The Plenty Method gives people the tools they need to increase their purchases of organic food, so they can eat well and support the pollinators, too. Over time, this will help foster a robust food chain and vibrant ecosystems, and we can do this now. In a landmark decision in May of 2018, the European Commission banned three neonicotinoid insecticides linked to bee death. This is an encouraging sign that vast numbers of people are becoming aware of the need to protect our pollinators and it’s a huge win for the bees. We can join the crescendo of voices that created that legislation and add to the momentum. Our collective buying power can create massive transformation, one buying decision at a time.

Please consider using The Plenty Method to spend your food dollars wisely and well and to help protect our food supply for future generations. As I conclude writing this, the Beatles song “With a Little Help From My Friends” repeats in my inner ears. But I’ve added a word! “I get by with a little help from my little friends.” Dear bees, what true friends you are. You are our unsung heroes! Let’s join together to give them all the help they need.