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National Pollinator Health Strategy Released Today

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By Jerry Hayes, Monsanto Honey Bee Health Lead

Today, U.S. President Barack Obama’s Pollinator Health Task Force released the National Strategy to Promote the Health of Honey Bees and Other Pollinators (Strategy). The Strategy highlights the importance and benefits of public-private partnerships to improve pollinators’ health and habitats.

Notably, the Strategy identifies several partnerships that are making significant contributions to pollinator health. The Honey Bee Health Coalition (HBHC) is one of these partnerships, and I’m proud to say Monsanto is a member. HBHC is a diverse collaborative effort convened by The Keystone Policy Center and consists of more than 30 organizations and agencies from across the food, agriculture, government, conservation and beekeeping sectors. The HBHC provided a response to today’s news from the Pollinator Health Task Force.

I’m also pleased that the Pollinator Health Task Force recognized the work being done by the National Fish and Wildlife Fund (NFWF) to bring public and private organizations together to restore monarch butterfly habitat. Monsanto is partnering with NFWF as well as supporting monarch research, education and habitat restoration with commitments totaling more than $4 million over the next three years. The company acknowledges that it will take more than just funding, though. As my colleague Eric Sachs expressed in a recent blog post regarding our recent monarch commitments: “We’re also lending our innovative team of scientists, who collaborate with a range of partners to help ensure the monarch butterfly migration doesn’t become a journey of the past.”

I encourage you to take a moment and read about the Strategy, the HBHC response and our recent monarch commitments.

Today’s announcement from the Pollinator Health Task Force is an important recognition of the value of pollinators to both food production and the natural environment. At Monsanto, our vegetable seed and canola seed businesses depend on healthy pollinators. We also believe that through collaboration and identification of the right opportunities where plant, biological and environmental science and knowledge can best be leveraged, our company and partners can have real, meaningful, positive impact on pollinator health and habitats.

To learn more about our collaborative efforts to improve honey bee health and monarch butterfly populations, here are some helpful links:

4 Responses to "National Pollinator Health Strategy Released Today"

  1. Please please be honest!
    Admit it: The reason pollinators are in such terrible trouble is due, if not completely then substantially, to the poisons your company is dumping into OUR environment.
    Shame On You!
    You Lie to Us!!

    • Jaques,

      Both as people who work for an agriculture company and as people who rely on the same farms for food as everyone else, honey bee health is really important to us. And the decline in honey bee population is a concern we share with you. So we’re working with a lot of different partners to find solutions to this important challenge.

      We take the safety of our products, including Roundup and Roundup Ready seeds, seriously. Roundup has been tested for both short term toxicity to individual bees and longer term toxicity to adult and juvenile bees at the hive level. All this testing demonstrates that Roundup does not cause adverse effects on honey bees when used according to label directions. Roundup Ready crops undergo extensive safety evaluations, including the potential for them to have adverse effects on the environment. Regulators in the US and around the world evaluate these studies and have concluded that Roundup Ready crops can be safely grown and consumed.

      Research is still being done to determine all the factors that can harm honey bee health but the commonly suspected causes include parasites like the Varroa mite, diseases, poor nutrition, intentional and unintentional pesticide exposures and challenging weather conditions. No one thing is going to solve the problems of bee health, and these problems have to be addressed collectively.

  2. Pingback: National Pollinator Health Strategy Released | Monsanto Puerto Rico

  3. Pingback: National Pollinator Health Strategy Released | Monsanto Puerto Rico

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