It's the First World Bee Day

United Nations
World Bee Day
20 May

The value of bees

Bees and other pollinators, such as butterflies, bats and hummingbirds, are increasingly under threat from human activities.

Pollinators allow many plants, including many food crops, to reproduce. Not only do pollinators contribute directly to food security, but they are key to conserving biodiversity - a cornerstone of the Sustainable Development Goals. They also serve as sentinels for emergent environmental risks, signaling the health of local ecosystems.

Invasive insects, pesticides, land-use change and monocropping practices may reduce available nutrients and pose threats to bee colonies.

To raise awareness of the importance of pollinators, the threats they face and their contribution to sustainable development, the UN designated 20 May as World Bee Day.

Why this date?

20 May coincides with the birthday of Anton Janša, who in the 18th century pioneered modern beekeeping techniques in his native Slovenia and praised the bees for their ability to work so hard, while needing so little attention.


euronews    By Louise Miller     May 20, 2018

Sunday the 20th of May 2018 is the first World Bee day.

It was created last year by the UN General Assembly, after Slovenia initiated the idea, to focus on the essential role of bees and other pollinators in keeping the planet healthy.

Bee keepers from around the globe will work towards having the insects declared as an endangered species.

The stripy pollinators are declining every year largely due to human activity.

There are calls for modern intensive farming methods to be have more of a sustainable approach.

Threats include habitat loss, climate change, toxic pesticides and disease.

A third of the world’s food production is estimated to be dependent on the yellow and black creatures and other pollinators

Why we need bees:

- bees pollinate as many as 170,000 species of plants

- 80 percent of domestic fruit and vegetable varieties need them to ensure a good harvest

- Every third spoonful of food we eat is dependent on pollination

The brightly coloured insects don't just make honey. They're the largest pollinators in the world.

They're worth a tidy sum.

- economic worth of bees worldwide is 265 billion euros per year

- and 22 billion euros in Europe

An EU court upheld on Thursday (17 May 2018) a partial ban on three insecticides, saying that the European Commission had been right in 2013 to restrict their use to protect bees.

A German supermarket in Hannover emptied its shelves of pollinated products to show the significance if bees died out.

60 percent of the shelves remained empty.