Bayer CropScience has launched a program with a goal to plant 50 million flowers across the U.S.
The consumer-oriented program will send people a free packet of 200 seeds of pollinator wildflower mix. Or, participants can elect to have the company to plant flowers on their behalf. People can join the effort by visiting FeedABee.com. Visitors to the site can learn more about honey bees and other pollinators as well as see a tally of flowers planted toward the 50 million goal.
In addition to the consumer campaign, the company will collaborate with at least 50 government, nonprofit organizations, and business to plant thousands of flowers to grow between regular crop production periods for bees. Some of those groups include McCarty Family Farms, Conservation Technology Information Center, Seeds For Bees, California and Washington Cover Crops, and the National Wild Turkey Federation.
“Reduced bee habitat has decreased food options for bees at a time when agriculture and apiculture must work together to feed more people than ever,” said Jim Blome, president and CEO of Bayer CropScience North America. “The Feed a Bee initiative provides opportunities for everyone to be a part of creating more forage for these amazing creatures.”
During a teleconference to announce the program, the company also discussed research being conducted at its North American Bayer Bee Care Center Raleigh, NC. Key projects include developing materials to combat varroa mite, bee repellants to be added to compounds that might harm them, and smart hives to remotely monitor bee health from inside the hive.