Importance for Food Security and Nutrition

“Ending hunger is everyone’s responsibility”

Ban Ki Moon, South Korean diplomat and the eighth Secretary-General of the United Nations from January 2007 to December 2016

With the expected growth of the world population, there will be an increasing need for food, which should be rich in the micronutrients, vitamins and minerals indispensable for a balanced diet and human development and well-being.

Bees are renowned for the production of highly nutritious products (such as honey, royal jelly and pollen) and other products (such as wax, propolis and bee venom) used in medicines and other sectors. But bees do more than this!

The role of bees and other pollinators is of key importance, as they provide for 90 percent of global nutrition or in other word, three-quarters of food crops in the world depend to some extent on pollination. Already nowadays every third bite of food we take is thanks to a bee or other pollinator.


Importance for Agriculture

“The ultimate goal of farming is not the growing of crops, but the cultivation and perfection of human beings.”

Masanobu Fukuoka, Japanese farmer and philosopher

Over the past 50 years, global agriculture has become increasingly pollinator-dependent. Pollinator-dependent crops such as fruit, vegetables, and seed, nut and oil crops have increased by 300%. In fact, one-third of global food production now depends on bees.

Efficient pollination results in better quality of produce and its increased resilience against pests. Thus bees contribute to agricultural production and farmers’ income.


Importance for Biodiversity and the Environment

"Bees are a sign of well-functioning ecosystems"

José Graziano da Silva, Director-General of the Food and Agriculture Organization from January 2012 onwards

Bees are an indicator species, meaning that their presence, absence or abundance reflects a specific environmental condition.

Bees, as pollinating species provide one of the most visible ecosystem services that make food production even possible. They contribute to biodiversity by safeguarding ecosystems, species and genetic diversity and represent a regulating ecosystem service in nature.

© 2017 (World) Bee Day

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