Did you know that one out of every three bites of food we eat is made possible by bees and other pollinators? As well as helping our flowers to grow, they’re responsible for a third of our food.
In a Rolling Stone article, ‘What is Killing America’s Bees and What Does it Mean for Us?’, Beekeeper Jim Doan was at a loss when it came to his bees. His hives had gone from 5,600 in 2004 to just 275 in 2014. After searching for an answer, he heard from scientists at Penn State University, that a commercially available insecticide was to blame.
The chemical that was coated on these seeds, gets absorbed into the plant as it grows, making it predator-resistant. Great news for the farmers, bad news for everything else. Jim Doan’s bees were going to the farmers’ crops, rolling around in pollen and then not being able to function and going belly-up.
So now we know that bees are in a rapid decline, thanks largely to the increased use of pesticides and herbicides used on crops in North America, what can we do?
Well, in theory it’s simple. Organic and Non-GMO farming practices don’t use pesticides (for insects) or herbicides (for weeds). They work with nature, including our friendly bees. Organic farming supports pollination with practices like planting native flowers and building strong eco-systems.
There are lots of organic choices out there, but don’t just pick any. Find food that tastes really, really good and that isn’t over-cooked or is bland.
For baby: Tiny Tummies is a Vancouver, BC based company, co-founded by the Giampa sisters. They’re handcrafted with added amaranth and extra virgin olive oil to enhance nutrition. Plus they’re 100% organic with no added preservatives, sugar or salt. Find them here
For Grown-Ups: Nature’s Path Organic Foods have pretty much the best cereal and granola I’ve ever eaten. If you’re looking for a nutritious boost, try the Qi’a superseeds cereal. Or if indulgence is you’re thing, then get the Love Crunch. You’ll probably need two bags. One to eat and the other one to disguise the fact that you ate a whole bag in one sitting.
Oh, don’t forget the snacks. As an Englishman, now living in Canada, I’d never heard of Chicago Mix Popcorn. Cheese and caramel? Yuck, right? Wrong. So very wrong. It’s amazing and I need some more right now. My personal favourite is the G.H. Cretors ‘The Mix’.
Coffee time? Yes, it’s always coffee time and one of my go-to’s is another local brand, making big waves is Kicking Horse Coffee. From the Hola Ground (light) to Smart Ass (medium), Kiss Ass (dark) to Grizzly Claw (dark), they’ve got what you need and are available on Amazon.
So, when you’re next doing some gardening, throw some non-GMO seeds around the borders and stick to the organic fertilizer. Grow some vegetables to enjoy throughout the summer, but leave off the chemicals. We’ll all thank you for it!