End production: 25/07/2012 First transmission: 25/07/2012
Bee mortality is rising while the number of beekeepers in Europe is declining. The effects of this decrease of bees' population may be unexpected in day-to-day life, as 76% of food production and 84% of plant species dependent on pollination by bees.
The European Union is concerned about this, especially because scientific studies have not been able to determine the exact cause or the extent of these increased mortalities. Nevertheless, several possibilities are being considered, as the health of bees is linked with many factors, such as natural causes (bacterial, viral, parasitic, etc), the availability of appropriate treatments, invasive species and environmental changes. Other factors that are considered include the use of pesticides in agriculture.
The European parliament is involved in the fight against bees disappearance by promoting pollinator-friendly farming practices and maintaining and improving "The Animal Health Strategy for the European Union (2007-2013 – "Prevention is better than cure"), which is due to expire in 2012. Among the new measures, MEPs propose to enhance labelling rules and controls, further research on bee mortality and the inclusion of bee diseases in EU veterinary policy.
Only the original language version is authentic and it prevails in the event of its differing from the translated versions.
||Countryside images from the Lummen region, Belgium (5 shots).
||Images of the Limburg's President of imkers (bee keepers), showing the process of opening hives installed in the middle of a forest at the Hasselt region (4 shots).
||Close-ups of bees in hives (2 shots)
||Beekeeping at a cottage in the Hasselt region (6 shots).
||Urban bee-keeping in a private house (10 shots) in Brussels, Belgium.
||Hives installed at the roof of the European Economic and Social Committee (3 shots).
||Honey shop in Brussels, Belgium. Images of the different products made with honey and of a client tasting honey (3 shots).