The bee is being attacked by an increasing number of bee pests (such as varroa mite) and diseases. Featuring prominently in this equation is the severe decline in floral nutrition resources creating a shortage of quality pollen for the bees to eat. Malnutrition severely compromises the bees’ resistance to pests and diseases.
One mouthful in three, and nearly ¾ of the diversity of our produce, is directly attributed to bee pollination. This is an important, global issue.
In 2009, NZ Federated Farmers launched the ‘Trees for Bees NZ’ campaign to ensure that honey bees have the opportunity to gather sufficient pollen and nectar, providing the vitamins and minerals required to maintain optimum hive strength and a viable pollinating bee force. New Zealand Manuka Group is a sponsor of this fantastic programme, supporting and protecting the future of our bee colonies nationwide.
Bees consume pollen as a protein and vitamin source and nectar for energy. While gathering these resources, they move pollen from one plant to another thus benefiting the farm by pollinating crops.
Availability of quality pollen resources is critical during spring when beekeepers are building up bee populations for pollination services. Any shortfall leads to weakened bees making them susceptible to pests and diseases. It also dramatically slows the queens breeding output and results in under-performing pollination.