CropLife America welcomes White House pollinator task force report

EPA urged to protect bees against pesticides
EPA urged to protect bees against pesticides | Courtesy of bbe-tech.com

CropLife America said it welcomed Tuesday’s release of a White House Pollinator Health Strategy report, praising its multi-pronged, coordinated approach to supporting honeybees and other pollinators, which provide major support to agriculture.

The report was the result of nearly a year of study by the White House Pollinator Health Task Force. The strategy posed hopes to address the declining health of pollinator populations, which are responsible for over $24 billion in America’s economy. The honeybee alone supports 90 different commercial crops in North America.

“The crop protection industry looks forward to joining the many stakeholders in reviewing the National Pollinator Health Strategy,” said Jay Vroom, CropLife America’s president and CEO. “We are hopeful both the private and public sectors can strategically address pollinator health together.”

The strategy includes restoring and enhancing land used by pollinators, reducing deaths of honeybees and increasing the monarch butterfly population.

“CLA and our members support stewardship practices in seed treatment, among other key crop protection strategies, and we will continue to work with growers, beekeepers, regulators and other stakeholders to promote responsible pesticide use,” Vroom said.

Research has found that using pesticides according to label instructions as approved by the Environmental Protection Agency have no significant effect on hives of honeybees. The process of developing those label instructions with the EPA involves mitigation of any hazardous impact on the environment, including pollinator health.

Stakeholders have eagerly awaited the Obama administration’s task force report on pollinators. In his June, 2014 memorandum, Obama noted that honey bee pollination alone adds more than $15 billion in value to agricultural crops each year in the United States. It also highlighted the many factors that can negatively impact honey bee health, including poor bee nutrition, loss of forage lands, parasites and lack of bee genetic diversity.

CropLife America represents the developers and manufacturers of plant science solutions for agriculture and pest management in the United States.

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