Saturday, August 18 is National Honey Bee Awareness Day. As stated on their website, the main goals of the day are to promote and advance beekeeping, to educate the public about honeybees and beekeeping, and to make the public aware of environmental issues that affect honeybees.
This year’s theme is “Sustainable Agriculture Starts With Honey Bees.” This has become an issue to farming because bees around the world have been dying off due to a phenomenon known as Colony Collapse Disorder.
Honeybees are vital to our food supply. Without bees, there’s no pollination. Without pollination, there’s a negative impact on the quality and quantity of our food supply, because there are over 130 different crops that depend on them. Having a local source of honeybees contributes greatly to local food security.
There are special events to commemorate Bee Awareness Day in local communities throughout the country; check with your local garden center, beekeeping group, or county agriculture department to find one near you.
There are also some other ways to help year-round. Do one of the following to support the honeybees:
- Support local beekeepers by buying locally-produced honey and other beehive products. Honey is a great “green” sweetener.
- Plant a bee-friendly garden and purchase wildflower seeds, not only to support National Honey Bee Day, but to help the honeybees, native pollinators, and the environment.
- Join or contribute to one of the campaigns designed to help the honeybees, including Häagen-Dazs Help the Honey Bees, or The Foundation for the Preservation of Honey Bees.
- Attend a local screening of the documentary Vanishing of The Bees. Or buy the DVD and screen it yourself for friends and family to get them educated about the issue as well.
- Consider becoming a “backyard” beekeeper yourself. The more beekeepers there are, the more bees there are. And there will be a stronger coalition to advocate for the bees and educate the public.