AUCKLAND, New Zealand--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The world’s honey bee population is under threat, meaning global food security is . . . well, anything but secure.
The honey bee is responsible for agricultural production through pollination, meaning the species are literally responsible for one out of every three bites of food we eat.
New Zealand beekeeper Andy Cory oversees 3000 hives in New Zealand and 1000 in the Pacific Islands, and is considered one of the Pacific’s leading apiculturists.
Fortunately, Cory and a group of friends are working together to safeguard the world against Colony Collapse Disorder (as the honey bee’s demise is commonly referred in the Northern Hemisphere) and the answer lies with Pacific island of Niue.
The group, a partnership between Niue Honey Company Ltd and Mighty River Honey Ltd., are converting current operations into a retail focussed social enterprise operating out of Niue, with the goal of selling honey, and other bee products, under the brand “Save The Bee”.
A share of the profits from the sale of the Save The Bee products goes toward the development of a global bee sanctuary on Niue, which is home to the healthiest last known and sufficiently isolated stock of Italian honey bees in the region, and likely the world.
“The Italian honey bee (Apis mellifera ligustica), which is a major contributor towards global agriculture and horticulture, was brought to Niue from New Zealand many years ago, well before the major honey bee diseases, parasites and associated chemicals afflicting today’s bees could affect them,” tells Mighty River Honey managing director Richard Duncan.
“They’ve since been isolated in a tropical paradise for bees and we want to ensure the ongoing protection and preservation of this last stock of clean bees for future generations,” said Duncan.
Duncan said creating and funding a bee sanctuary with the aim of eventually being able to export clean, healthy and gentle bee stock to other countries is no simple task.
“And with an alarming 42 per cent mortality rate in the US over the last year, we hope to fast track the creation of the sanctuary through funds created from retail honey sales associated with the Save The Bee social enterprise initiative.”
Visit the crowdfunding site to find out more about Save The Bee and how you can help protect global food security.