Bayer is no stranger to Bee Care. Through the years they’ve offered a variety of programs to support these important pollinators and at the Farm Progress Show I had the opportunity to talk with Becky Langer about their newest initiatives.
Healthy Hives was launched last year, with a focus on researching four key areas relating to bee health: pests and disease, hive management, digital sensors and technology for hives, and bee genetics. Bayer received 20 proposals for projects to study these issues and this June the first seven of those projects was funded. It’s exciting, she told me, that results that should soon be coming in.
“Bees have captured the heart of Americans and are at the forefront of people’s minds. However, bees are without a doubt part of agriculture, so we have to have those innovations to keep our pollinators healthy as well,” Langer said about the recent uptick in innovation for bee care.
The Feed a Bee program was also kick-started last year, with success beyond what the Bayer team had hoped. The initiative anticipated providing 50 million flowers to plant nation wide. They’re now up to 155 million and counting. They’ve also exceeded expectations in terms of partnerships for this program. Initial conjectures were for 50 partners. That number has climbed to 115, with an exciting relationship with the Wildlife Society that will result in 4 national plantings of wildflowers this fall.
“We want everyone to plant flowers. They can all do their part and provide habitat for the bees,” Langer reminds listeners. “And always follow label directions if you are using anything on your farm fields or around your own home.”
Listen to the full interview here: [wpaudio url=”http://traffic.libsyn.com/zimmcomm/FPS16-Bayer-Langer.mp3″ text=”Interview with Becky Langer, Bayer Bee Care”]