• Who Will Give a Hand to the Bees?

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    Who Will Give a Hand to the BeesConducting surveys are ways of finding out and weighing in a study’s advantages and disadvantages, positive and negatives, helpful and detrimental, and so on. The results will provide the basis for decision-making.

    In a recent press release by the Alberta Beekeepers Commission, it was announced that a Canada-wide health surveillance study of the honeybee will take place over the next four years.

    According to the ABC, the study will be conducted in order to find connections between the health of the honeybee population and honeybee pests and diseases.

    On the basis of the population of the bees, a study will be conducted with the purpose of finding the health the honey bee populace can bring about or the danger it could pose. The more bees there are, the more honey. On the down side, there are more toxins. This could lead to diseases.

    However, while the study may seem like a positive that could scarcely be argued against, the truth is that the study will be funded in part by Canada's government and also by major international biotech and agricultural companies such as Monsanto, BASF, Bayer, DuPont and several others. Partial funding for the study comes from Canada's Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (equivalent to the USDA), as the result of a grant which was applied for by the ABC – which represents 60% of Canada's honey crop. The study will collect samples from across the country in all 10 provinces and will allegedly be analysed for “the most common bee pests and diseases. In addition, apiaries will be sampled for high-risk exotic pests.”

    According to the ABC, “the project will document the distribution and intensity of known and potential diseases, pests and parasites in Canada's commercial beekeeping industry.” Notably lacking, however, is the question of potential adverse bee health effects related to such obvious toxins and environmental pollutants as genetically modified foods and industrial chemical pesticides. This of course, might be due to the fact that the study is also funded by CropLife Canada, a subsidiary of CropLife International. CropLife International is a consortium of Big Agri and biotech companies like Monsanto, DuPont, Bayer CropScience, Dow AgroSciences, Syngenta, BASF, FMC Corp and Sumitomo. CropLife International was previously known as Global Crop Protection Federation as well as International Group of National Associations of Manufacturers of Agrochemical Products. Indeed, it appears that the most dangerous bee pests are not lurking near the Canadian beehives, but providing funding for the study itself. With friends like these, the bees need no enemies. It is highly unlikely that the Canadian bee study will produce any valid or productive results.

    The surveillance study to be conducted will be about the potential risk for toxins and environmental pollutants by these bees that could to diseases. These bees have been thought to be dangerous as they can become pests and have parasites. As to who really will conduct this study is not clear more so as to the funding.

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