A World Without Bees
The price we'll pay if we don't figure out what's killing the honeybee
by Bryan Walsh
TIME Magazine, August 19, 2013
You can thank the Apis Mellifera, better known as the Western honeybee, for 1 in every 3 mouthfuls of food you'll eat today. From the almond orchards of central California--where each spring billions of honeybees from across the U.S. arrive to pollinate a multibillion-dollar crop--to the blueberry bogs of Maine, the bees are the unsung, unpaid laborers of the American agricultural system, adding more than $15 billion in value to farming each year. In June, a Whole Foods store in Rhode Island, as part of a campaign to highlight the importance of honeybees, temporarily removed from its produce section all the food that depended on pollinators. Of 453 items, 237 vanished, including apples, lemons and zucchini and other squashes. Honeybees "are the glue that holds our agricultural system together," wrote journalist Hannah Nordhaus in her 2011 book, The Beekeeper's Lament.
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