Today, May 20, is World Bee Day

Annual celebration World Bee Day It raises awareness of the key role that bees and other pollinators play in preserving the health of people and the planet, as well as the many challenges they face today.

The date chosen for the bee celebration is the birth of Anton Janša, the bee pioneer. modern beekeeping He belongs to a family of beekeepers from Slovenia, where beekeeping is an important agricultural activity with a long tradition.

Currently, the number of bees, pollinators and many other insects is declining. World Bee Day is an opportunity for governments, organizations, civil society and interested citizens to promote activities that protect and help pollinators and their habitats, increase their numbers and diversity and support sustainable development of beekeeping.

The importance of pollinators

Bad pollinators They are necessary for the preservation of the ecosystem, because they contribute to the maintenance of the genetic diversity of plants, and thus the storehouse of possibilities that must be faced:

  • environmental changes
  • maintain the variety and quality of food
  • increase the ability to resist pests and diseases
  • to be part of evolutionary processes on large time scales

Pollinators are also essential to the well-being of human societies provide nutritious foodsuch as beans, chili peppers, pumpkins, coffee, cocoa, vanilla, tomatoes, papaya, sweet potatoes, sunflowers, strawberries, apples, potatoes, cucumbers and onions.

In addition to the production of food for human consumption, pollinators play a significant role in the production of food for livestock and in the existence of medicinal and ornamental plants such as lavender, laurel, rue and dahlia.

Pollinators are vital in forest systems, as they are responsible for the reproduction of large numbers of trees. And they are part of the beauty and inspiration of our world.

Especially, bees produce honey, wax and propolis, which are used as food and for medicinal purposes. A relevant case is stingless bees, which belong to the meliponine group. They are social bees that live in permanent colonies, like European bees and have 500 species worldwide and 46 species in Mexico.

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Interesting facts about bees and pollinators

According to the report of FAO “Commitment to bees: for agricultural production that respects pollinators”, these are some important aspects about bees and pollinators:

  • Some pollinators such as bees, birds and bats contribute 35% of the world’s total agricultural production, pollinating 87 of the world’s 115 major food crops.
  • Most species of pollinators are wild, including more than 20 thousand species of bees.
  • Pollination produces an abundance of diverse and nutritious fruits, vegetables and nuts.
  • About 75% of crops worldwide that produce fruits or seeds for human consumption depend, at least in part, on pollinators.
  • The alarming decline in bee and pollinator numbers in many regions can be attributed to a number of factors, including pesticide abuse and habitat loss.
  • Pollination produces an abundance of diverse and nutritious fruits, vegetables and nuts.
  • The protection of bees and other pollinators represents one of the pillars of the transformative change necessary for agroecological transition and sustainable agriculture.
bees- in the flower
Pollinators such as bees are crucial to guaranteeing nutritious food. Photo: Freepik

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