Letter From The Editor

This year’s National Honey Bee Day theme is “Beekeeping—Ask Me How to Get Started.” Urban beekeeping is abuzz all over the world and if you’re not already keeping bees, maybe this will be the year to start your own hive. It’s a lot easier than most people think. And the sweetness of having honeybee energy in your garden or patio is indescribable.

This is the fourth annual holiday, and since first hearing about Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD) in 2007, I can firmly attest that honeybees are on the forefront of our consciousness more than ever before! Our virgin sisters of toil even made the cover of Time Magazine a few days ago, just in time for National Honey Bee Day.

Prime Time For The Plight Of The Honeybees: An op-ed on mainstream coverage of the beeapocalypse

While we may be more aware of bees, that hasn’t stopped them from dying at alarming rates.

During the last five years, beekeepers have lost more than 30 percent of their hives annually. And while there are several viruses, parasites, and pathogens that do attack bees, our pollinators would have a fighting chance if systemic pesticides weren’t compromising their immune systems. Back when my documentary Vanishing of the Bees was released, our theory was unsubstantiated with no mainstream studies in circulation. Today, significant evidence links the use of a certain class of nicotine-derived pesticides with bee die-offs.

The first step in creating change is education. At HoneyColony, we firmly believe that sharing truthful information and walking your talk is the way to make a difference. And while change is slow, it is happening.

This year, Europe placed two-year bans on three pesticides in the neonicotinoid family: clothianidin, imidacloprid, and thiamethoxam. And following a massive bee death in Portland, Oregon’s state capitol promptly took action and temporarily restricted the use of 18 pesticides. And Rep. John Conyers and Rep. Earl Blumenauer introduced the Save America’s Pollinators Act (H.R. 2692).

More than 70 percent of America’s food sources are pollinated by bees and the worldwide economic value of these crops is as high as $200 billion a year.

Our small hive at HoneyColony is also celebrating some great news. The Pollination Project, a nonprofit organization that grants $1,000 a day, every day, to individual changemakers and activists, selected HoneyColony as one of its recipients. The Pollination Project funds and helps actualize ideas that benefit people, planet, and animals in areas like environmental sustainability, social justice, community health and wellness, arts, and media.

They too believe that every person has the potential and power to transform our world and that change starts with ourselves:

“We love HoneyColony’s innovative approach to curating and sharing information about health and wellness,” says Alissa Hauser, Executive Director of the Pollination Project. “What a great way to connect with others around leading a healthier and happier life.”

Meanwhile, as our mission continues to grow with the help of our supporters, we’ve outlined a manifesto and launched a campaign to raise funds through sales of our popular organic Bee the Change t-shirts. We want to thank Beyond Pesticides and Pesticide Action Network North America for being on the front lines of this fight against Big Agra and their poisons. And many, many thanks to all of you who’ve made a purchase and a conscious choice to be seen and to help raise awareness about the plight of the honeybees.

Bee the change you want to see in the world. If we don’t unite and take action together now, Congress might not either.

Together, we make a difference by choosing to buy organic and working as a hive to get these harmful chemicals banned.

Sweetly,

Maryam Henein

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