A Parliament report is highlighting the issues facing Europe’s apiculture sector. From counterfeit honey to harmful pesticides that are putting bee populations at risk, MEPs are calling for changes to help protect the EU’s bees.
Europe's bees are having a rough time of it. Fewer and fewer people are eating honey, counterfeit and adulterated versions are on the rise, and every year, 100,000 tonnes of the stuff actually come to the EU from China. MEPs want to protect the apiculture sector by forcing producers who adulterate their honey to follow EU law or risk punishment. Bees are a vital part of EU agriculture, and have an impact on 76% of food production in the EU. But certain pesticides used for crops are having a harmful effect on bee populations. The European Parliament is to set up a special committee to look into how these pesticides are approved – in particular investigating possible conflicts of interest. Parliament also wants European beekeepers to get more financial support, to make Europe a thriving market for honey and other bee products – hopefully making life a little sweeter for Europe's bees.